02:42 GMT +317 November 2019
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    European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker speaks during a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels. File photo

    Juncker Calls Brexit Tragedy, Historic Error, Urges Everyone to Make Best of It

    © AP Photo / Virginia Mayo
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    Addressing the European Parliament on Tuesday, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker made numerous interesting comments about the bloc's future relationship with Britain.

    Top Eurocrat Jean-Claude Juncker today described Brexit as a "tragedy" and a "historic error," but insisted that the European Union (EU) is not looking to punish Britain for voting to leave the bloc. 

    Moreover, Juncker said the EU is not in an "aggressive mood" on post-Brexit political and economic relations with the UK, underscoring the need for the union to continue to work with London long after Brexit. 

    READ MORE: Without a Withdrawal Agreement, There’s no Transition Period — Prof on Brexit

    Despite branding Brexit a mistake on Britain's part, Juncker called on all parties to work together to make the best of the situation, especially as the Article 50 deadline gets closer and closer. 

    Negotiators are reportedly close to striking a deal, with Minister of Cabinet Office David Lidington earlier suggesting a deal could be reached within 48 hours, though Brussels and the UK are yet to finalize terms of the Irish backstop. 

    The EU published its contingency plan for a "disorderly" Brexit on Tuesday afternoon, following a communique published in July.

    However, the European Commission warned that no amount of planning and contingency measures can fully "remedy" the economic disruption a no-deal Brexit will bring about, stressing the need for negotiators to continue to work tirelessly to secure a bespoke withdrawal deal.

    READ MORE: EU Publishes Contingency Plan for 'Disorderly' Brexit

    Tags:
    Brexit, UK Government, European Commission, European Union, David Lidington, Jean-Claude Juncker, Brussels, United Kingdom
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