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Juncker begging UK to return to EU after exit

Staff Writer | January 17, 2018
Jean Claude Juncker has said he would be "happy" to help Britain rejoin the EU if it wants to after Brexit.
Europe   The European Commission president
The European Commission president said the UK could apply to rejoin under Article 49 of the Lisbon Treaty even after it leaves the EU in March 2019 - if the government or British people want to "find a way out" of Brexit.

It comes after European Council President Donald Tusk said on Tuesday he was open to a "change of heart" from the UK.

Juncker described Brexit as a "lose-lose situation" for Britain and the EU and a "catastrophe".

And addressing the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Wednesday, he went on: "Tusk said that our hand remains outstretched.

"The British people, the British Government, may wish to find a different way out of the Brexit situation, and we are very much willing to deal with them.

"We are not throwing the British out, we would like the British to stay, and if they so wish, they should be allowed to do so.

"In London, there was a rather irritated response to this proposal (to stay in the EU), but note that even if the British leave according to Article 50 then Article 49 would allow them to accede again and I would be happy to facilitate that."