Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Sarkozy says "The British are right"

Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy made a very interesting speech earlier this week in which he said that many of the criticisms made by the British of the European Union are accurate.

"On much of their criticism, the British are right," Sarkozy told Le Monde in an interview. "The peoples' estrangement from Europe is a major worry for all countries," he said, while underlining that he strongly opposed Britain quitting the EU.

"But Brexit or not, we'll need, in all scenarios, to deeply relaunch the European project, and that will have to be done through a treaty that France must initiate, from the summer of 2017," Sarkozy said.

More details from Reuters here.

In terms of the referendum, Sarkozy's comments can be argued two ways and undoubtedly will be. I have no doubt that those who already want to leave will present the fact that a statesman who has been as intimately involved with the EU as Sarkozy says many of the British criticisms of the EU are accurate as an argument for leaving it.

However, it is worth pointing out that Sarkozy himself hopes Britain will not leave and you could also take his comments as an argument that some of the reforms many British people believe the EU needs, and which we would want to see if we stay in, are beginning to win support in other EU member countries.

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