01:48 GMT +317 October 2018
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    Brexit

    European Council President Says EU Reform Deal With UK Not Guaranteed

    © AFP 2018 / EMMANUEL DUNAND
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    Success in talks between the European Union and the United Kingdom over EU reforms demanded by London cannot be guaranteed, European Council President Donald Tusk said Wednesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The two-day EC summit in Brussels is due to take place between February 18-19. European leaders are expected to focus on the United Kingdom's plans to hold a referendum on its membership of the bloc unless concessions are achieved over political and economic power devolution as well as migration and migrants' social benefits restrictions.

    "After my consultations in the last hours I have to state frankly: there is still no guarantee that we will reach an agreement. We differ on some political issues and I am fully aware that it will be difficult to overcome them. Therefore I urge you to remain constructive," Tusk said in an invitation letter to European Council members ahead of the upcoming EC summit.

    On February 2, Tusk offered an array of reforms to meet some of London's demands, while Cameron stressed that there may be just months to settle an agreement before Britain's Brexit referendum takes place.

    Cameron pledged to hold a referendum on the United Kingdom's future within the European Union by the end of 2017. Ahead of the vote, the British prime minister is seeking to revise the terms of the country's membership in the bloc, including an exemption from the EU principle of an ever-closer union and curbs for EU immigrants.

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