Joint state­ment by Don­ald Tusk, Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Coun­cil, Martin Schulz, Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Mark Rutte, holder of the ro­tat­ing Pres­i­dency of the Coun­cil of the EU, and Jean-Claude Juncker, Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion,

The Star (St. Lucia) - - INTERNATIONAL -

In a free and demo­cratic process, the Bri­tish peo­ple have ex­pressed their wish to leave the Euro­pean Union. We re­gret this de­ci­sion but re­spect it.

This is an un­prece­dented sit­u­a­tion but we are united in our re­sponse. We will stand strong and up­hold the EU’s core val­ues of pro­mot­ing peace and the well-be­ing of its peo­ples. The Union of 27 Mem­ber States will con­tinue. The Union is the frame­work of our com­mon po­lit­i­cal fu­ture. We are bound to­gether by his­tory, ge­og­ra­phy and com­mon in­ter­ests and will de­velop our co­op­er­a­tion on this ba­sis. To­gether we will ad­dress our com­mon chal­lenges to gen­er­ate growth, in­crease pros­per­ity and en­sure a safe and se­cure en­vi­ron­ment for our cit­i­zens. The in­sti­tu­tions will play their full role in this en­deav­our.

We now ex­pect the United King­dom gov­ern­ment to give ef­fect to this de­ci­sion of the Bri­tish peo­ple as soon as pos­si­ble, how­ever painful that process may be. Any de­lay would un­nec­es­sar­ily pro­long un­cer­tainty. We have rules to deal with this in an or­derly way. Ar­ti­cle 50 of the Treaty on Euro­pean Union sets out the pro­ce­dure to be fol­lowed if a Mem­ber State de­cides to leave the Euro­pean Union. We stand ready to launch ne­go­ti­a­tions swiftly with the United King­dom re­gard­ing the terms and con­di­tions of its with­drawal from the Euro­pean Union. Un­til this process of ne­go­ti­a­tions is over, the United King­dom re­mains a mem­ber of the Euro­pean Union, with all the rights and obli­ga­tions that de­rive from this. Ac­cord­ing to the Treaties which the United King­dom has rat­i­fied, EU law con­tin­ues to ap­ply to the full to and in the United King­dom un­til it is no longer a Mem­ber.

As agreed, the “New Set­tle­ment for the United King­dom within the Euro­pean Union”, reached at the Euro­pean Coun­cil on 18-19 Fe­bru­ary 2016, will now not take ef­fect and ceases to ex­ist. There will be no rene­go­ti­a­tion.

As re­gards the United King­dom, we hope to have it as a close part­ner of the Euro­pean Union in the fu­ture. We ex­pect the United King­dom to for­mu­late its pro­pos­als in this re­spect. Any agree­ment, which will be con­cluded with the United King­dom as a third coun­try, will have to re­flect the in­ter­ests of both sides and be balanced in terms of rights and obli­ga­tions.”

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