12:40 GMT +318 November 2019
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    French President Francois Hollande speaks to media reporters as he arrives for the EU summit in Brussels, Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016.

    Talks on UK Leaving EU to Be 'Hard' if May Wants 'Hard Brexit' - Hollande

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    According to the French president, the talks on the UK leaving the EU will be hard if Theresa May wants trade barriers with EU countries and single market restrictions.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The negotiations on the United Kingdom leaving the European Union will be hard if UK Prime Minister Theresa May wants "hard Brexit," meaning trade barriers with EU countries and single market restrictions, French President Francois Hollande said Thursday.

    "If Mrs May wants a ‘hard Brexit,’ the negotiations will be hard," he told reporters ahead of a European Council summit in Brussels.

    May said on October 2 that the United Kingdom would trigger Article 50 of the EU Lisbon Treaty by the end of March 2017 to start the official procedures to cease its EU membership.

    On June 23, Brits voted to leave the European Union by a margin of 52 percent to 48 percent. The formal procedure is expected to end in 2019.

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    European Union, Brexit, Francois Hollande, Theresa May, United Kingdom
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