01:15 GMT +319 July 2019
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    France, Ireland Pushing UK to Initiate Brexit Process 'as Soon as Possible'

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    French President Francois Hollande and Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny in a joint statement on Thursday called on the United Kingdom to start the process of leaving the European Union as soon as possible.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) —Earlier in the day, Hollande arrived in Dublin to discuss a number of issues, including security cooperation and integration within the European Union, as well as the UK vote to leave the 28-nation bloc.

    According to the statement, cited by the Irish broadcaster RTE News, Hollande and Kenny "looked forward to the notification as soon as possible by the new British government of the UK's intention to withdraw from the Union, which will permit orderly negotiations to begin."

    It was noted in the statement that the two leaders agreed to maintain the closest possible partnership with the United Kingdom, as it was their neighbor with significant and complex links.

    On June 23, the United Kingdom held a referendum to determine whether or not the country should leave the European Union. According to the final results, 51.9 percent of voters, or 17.4 million people, decided to support Brexit, while about 16.1 million opposed it.

    Uncertainty over the UK exit from the European Union persists as the country's government has delayed triggering Article 50 of the EU Lisbon Treaty that would initiate the formal process of withdrawal from the bloc and start talks with the EU leaders on the new format of their relations, including a possible free-trade agreement.


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