EU asks UK to exit fast while anti-Brexit camp protests; demand emerges for fresh referendum
London, June 26: The European Union (EU) has stepped up pressure on the UK to exit the club first after a historic referendum held on June 23 saw 52 per cent of the people of the country voting to go out of the union. However, things were far from settled in the UK where a demand to conduct a fresh referendum has gained voice. [EU's founding members meet in Berlin over UK vote to leave]
European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has said that since the UK is wanting to go out of the EU, it should finish off the procedure fast. He also said the divorce would not be "amicable". [Change or risk collapse: Italy to EU]
That puts the ball clearly in the court of British Prime Minister David Cameron who said after the Brexit that he would stay in office till October to make way for a successor who would manage the transition phase. [Hours after voting to leave EU, Britons googled "What is EU?"]
But the EU leaders are reluctant to wait that long. They feel the UK's own problems could not be allowed to paralyse an entire continental system and would see if the separation could be quickened under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty which says how an EU member-state could voluntarily exit from the union.
Meanwhile in the UK, unrest was witnessed since supporters of the anti-exit camp went out on the streets to protest the decision to quit the EU. The demand for a fresh referendum also came up and an online petition seeking it received over 27 lakh signatures at the time of writing this report. Any issue receiving a lakh signatures would be taken up in Parliament and observers predicted that a second referendum could also be a topic of intense discussion in Parliament. [Will Brexit see a Domino effect in Europe?]
Pro-Brexit leader Boris Johnson, who many are seeing as Cameron's successor at the 10 Downing, said the UK is the first sovereign country to have decided to leave the EU and hence, the settlement should be given enough time.