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1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Rating 5.00 (1 Vote)

Germany's press reflects the widespread shock at the British decision to leave the EU. At the highest level of government, no-one really expected this. And they are scrambling to defend German and European interests.

By Jenny Hill, BBC News, Berlin

The German position is focused on two major, and delicate, decisions.

Firstly, whether to use Brexit as an opportunity to deepen European integration, or to view it as a "wake-up call" and create more flexibility within the union.

And, secondly, how to deal with Britain - an important trading partner - as a "third country".

Senior economists and business leaders warn against barriers to free trade.

But politicians are talking tough. Concessions, they say, might encourage other member states to leave. For this reason one senior MP told me: "There must be consequences for Britain".


What comes next?

What is Article 50 of the EU Treaty?

  • In force since 2009 but never tested
  • Allows governments to notify intent to leave. Talks then begin on a range of issues between the leaving nation and other EU members
  • If no deal is reached, membership will automatically cease two years after notification
  • The article is only a basic template for leaving, settling the date and some other matters. It does not automatically include issues such as movement of people or trade. The latter could take years to conclude

 >BBC

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