Jean-Claude Juncker: I would help Britain rejoin the EU after Brexit

Posted On: 
17th January 2018

European Commission boss Jean-Claude Juncker today said he would help the UK rejoin the EU after Brexit if it chooses to.

Jean-Claude Juncker said the UK could rejoin the EU under Article 49
Credit: 
PA Images

The Brussels bigwig said he would be “happy to facilitate” the process as he branded Brexit a “catastrophe”.

It came after Mr Juncker yesterday backed up European Council president Donald Tusk when he said the UK could still change its mind on quitting the bloc.

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Addressing MEPs today, the Commission president said: "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.

"I would be happy to facilitate that."

Yesterday Mr Tusk told MEPs: “If the UK government sticks to its decision to leave, Brexit will become a reality, with all its negative consequences in March next year - unless there is a change of heart among our British friends.

“Wasn’t it David Davis himself who said ‘if a democracy cannot change its mind, it ceases to be a democracy’? We here on the continent haven’t had a change of heart – our hearts are still open to you.”

Mr Juncker backed the comments by his colleague, saying: "I hope that will be heard clearly in London."

Today Mr Juncker added: "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."

The intervention was welcomed by Remain supporters but sparked anger among eurosceptics.