Donald Tusk: Don’t give up on stopping Brexit
The EU President Donald Tusk has urged us to reconsider the democratic vote that started the process of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union.
As campaigning is heating up ahead of next month’s general election, the EU council president said that the UK’s exit from the EU will mark the “real end of the British Empire”.
Mr Tusk peddled the idea of a “united Europe” and was cheered by his audience at the College of Europe in Bruges last night, he said in his speech: “I have heard repeatedly from Brexiters that they wanted to leave the European Union to make the United Kingdom great again, believing that only alone, it can truly be great.
“You could hear in these voices a longing for the Empire. But the reality is exactly the opposite.
“Only as part of a united Europe can the UK play a global role.
“The UK election takes place in one month. Can things still be turned around? Hannah Arendt taught that things become irreversible only when people start to think so.
“So the only words that come to my mind today are simply: Don’t give up. In this match, we are already in extra time, perhaps it will even go to penalties.”
Mr Tusk also claimed the United Kingdom would be an “outsider” once it leaves the bloc, he went on to say: “After its departure, the U.K. will become an outsider, a second-rate player, while the main battlefield will be occupied by China, the US and the EU.
“One of my English friends is probably right when he says with melancholy that Brexit is the real end of the British Empire.”
The former head of the UK diplomatic service Sir Simon Fraser said he believed Mr Tusk was a friend of the UK but argued that making the comments he did was “not the right thing to do”.
Sir Simon Fraser said: “I think the principle that politicians don’t comment on the electoral affairs of other countries is a wise principle.”
Donald Tusk is set to stand down from his role next month after having held the office for five years.