14:47 GMT05 July 2020
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    Britain Says 'Cheerio' to EU (463)

    On Thursday, the UK held a referendum, in which a majority of Northern Irish voters supported retaining membership of the 28-nation bloc. Despite this fact, support for Brexit in England and Wales outweighed resistance to the move in NI and Scotland, with 51.9 percent of British voters favoring the country's withdrawal from the EU on Thursday.

    In an interview with Sputnik, a number of European politicians commented on the results of the referendum. Thus, Serbian politician and leader of the Democratic Party of Serbia Sanda Raskovic Ivic said that the voting was the best proof of the fact that important decisions should be made by the people.

    "I would like to stress the degree of the democratic development in Great Britain which directly asked its citizens about their choice. What happened is the best proof that important decisions should be made by the people, and not by public administration, and especially not by the administration in Brussels," Raskovic Ivic said.

    According to the politician, Brexit will serve as motivation for European countries which are skeptical about Brussel's behavior and willing to return their independence from the EU. Raskovic Ivic argued that the UK is leaving the EU for several reasons.

    "One of them, perhaps, is the dissatisfaction with Germany's domination. But there are more important [reasons]: the country no longer wants to finance funds established for candidate countries and participate in alien politics. In addition, it has obviously been anxious about the limitation of their sovereignty," Raskovic Ivic stressed.

    At the same time Czech MEP Jaromír Kohlíček believes that Brexit will change little from the economic point of view: the UK will try to maintain economic ties with major European countries, student and academic exchanges will continue and cultural connections between the UK and the EU will remain strong.

    "However, the political outcome of the referendum is not so unambiguous. Forces critical of the EU will significantly strengthen their positions — and not only in the Czech Republic, but also in Europe. These will be especially those who insist on the modernization of the giant bureaucratic machine in the Union," Kohlíček said.

    "Now, for example, there is a debate on the EU budget after 2020. The English referendum will fuel this debate. It will strengthen the position of Eurosceptics who insist on a partial return of Brussels' functions to national states," the politician said.

    For his turn, Belgian politician Tom Van Grieken called the results of the referendum "fantastic news" and said that other European countries are likely to soon follow the lead.

    "Yes there will be a domino effect I think, the first country we should keep an eye on is I think the Netherlands," the politician stressed.
    A similar point of view is backed up by the leader of the Serbian Radical Party Vojislav Seselj.

    "This is a stake into the heart of the EU body. This process can't be stopped anymore. There will be new states that will follow the British example: possibly, Spain, Italy, Greece, Hungary is revolting, too. Fortunately, the EU will fall apart before Serbia joins the organization. We continue to reject the policy of European integration and we hope that the incident will shake the confidence of the Serbian ruling party in the necessity of this way and make them deeply reconsider the issue," the politician concluded.

    Britain Says 'Cheerio' to EU (463)


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