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EU President says Brexit threatens North, not EU

14 September 2018

The proposal, announced by Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in his State of the Union Address, would end the tradition of member states alternating between summertime and wintertime every year.

The following are highlights of his speech.

But he asked the British government to understand that the United Kingdom "cannot be in the same privileged position as a member state" when it leaves. You voted to leave, you can't stay part of a single market, all of which makes me wonder why Mrs May wants to opt back into things.

"It is not the European Union, it is Brexit that risks making the border more visible in Northern Ireland".

A senior European Union official said separately it would be sending a "wrong signal" to suggest there was a softening of the European Union line, and dismissed suggestions the bloc's leaders might rejig instructions for chief negotiator Michel Barnier when they meet May in Austria next week.

"Europe must always be a place where the freedom of the media is possible and is not called into question".

"Too many of our journalists are intimidated, attacked or even murdered...we can not have democracy without free press", Juncker said. "We can not have democracy without free press".

Judgments from the European Court of Justice, he said, needed to be respected, and implemented by member states. I stick with the opinion that it was a correct decision after the fall of communism.

The MEP explained: "The parliament's working group met to discuss the results of the consultation and we have been informed that tomorrow (Tuesday) the European Commission will come forward with its legislative proposal to finally get rid of the clock change".

"I love Europe still and shall do so forever more". "Patriotism is a virtue, nationalism is narrow-minded is a lie overwhelming and a poison wicked", he blasted. "Unchecked nationalism is riddled with both poison and deceit", he said. It was a sunny calm optimistic year in 1913.

He called for a new compact for central Europe focusing on safe energy and cohesion and a new masterplan for the south, focusing on youth employment. The European continent was a haven of peace. "It is not the European Union".

Juncker made no direct comment on Trump or United States policy but suggested the geopolitical situation was a USA retreat into "selfish unilateralism".

"When we are united we are a force to be reckoned with, something you can not avoid".

The president of the Commission believes that the time is "critical" while the worldwide context has become more unpredictable with an american president Donald Trump who preaches protectionism and did not hesitate to withdraw from global agreements. In May next year, a new parliament will be elected and in September it is expected to be busy with approving the new college of commissioners appointed by member states.

The amended Commission's proposal will further equip the future EU Asylum Agency with the necessary mandate, tools and financial means needed to provide a rapid and full service to Member States throughout the asylum procedure.

"There are no guarantees that our allies of yesterday will remain our allies of tomorrow", he added, announcing further proposals to strengthen the defence union, step up protection of EU external borders and reinforce the euro as an worldwide currency. Where they now exist, they must be removed.

"This is the stuff that needs to be done, and it will be all platforms in Europe, wherever they are based. We are out of time".

"Africa does not need charity, it needs true and fair partnerships".

However he did not mention the proposed numbers, or give any preview of the European Commission's forthcoming draft climate strategy for 2050.

The Commission, he said, was proposing a new "alliance with Africa" that would lead to the creation of some ten million jobs.

EU President says Brexit threatens North, not EU