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Is there a future for EU foreign policy without Britain?
Material posted: Publication date: 25-06-2016

Downing street was a supporter of tough measures and supported the Atlantic roll in the policy of the EU.

On 23 June a referendum in the UK was a shock to European leaders. The people of the European Union (Brexit) will have an impact on many aspects of its policies, not least on the impact of the EU on the world stage. Director of the Salzburg centre of European studies Sonia Puncher-Richman [1] in his interview to IA REGNUM noticed that it is not necessary to put in the forefront of the economic factors. "As for economic data, we are faced with different findings. And if it is 0.2 or 0.3 percent of the EU economy or Britain — does not matter". One of the two strongest armies, nuclear powers and members of the UN Security Council (along with France), which is a unit of the United Kingdom was the basis of geopolitical power of the Union.

Commenting on the results of the voting for the "Foggy Albion" the EU high representative for foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini said that despite Brexit, the EU remains an important global player. "We will continue to act as a pacifying force, the guarantor of security and loyal supporters of international cooperation and multilateralism" she said, expressing regret about the choice of the British. It is obvious that for example the leaders of France and Germany, the head of the European external action service (EEAS) expects to maintain the trust of citizens, but in fact realizes the cost of losses. Mogherini particularly unpleasant Brexit when less than a week she had to submit a new global strategy of the European Union. According to Brussels diplomats [2], the concept there is no mention of a European army, which in September 2015 Merkel urged British Prime Minister David Cameron. It is possible that the Brussels thus tried to please the London.

On 20 February after the EU summit where Cameron bargained for his country concessions on social security payments and of the independence of her Parliament, he said: "the national security of the UK will be exclusively under the control of London. For example, the UK will never become part of a European army" [3]. Giving the United Kingdom a special status, EU officials could hope for "change of winds" in British politics after decades. However, the referendum was scrapping the plans for building a capable European defence Union, backed by the forces of one of the most powerful armies (Royal Armed forces and intelligence agencies of the world (MI-6).

With all these "cons" Brexit could have a positive impact on the effectiveness and content of EU foreign policy. Care UK in a sense, to save France and Germany from the ballast integration. Having traditionally close relations with the countries of Eastern Europe, London has gathered around himself the opposition to supranational processes. Theoretically allowing a "Domino effect", i.e. the output of other dissenters, it is necessary to consider both. Brexit consolidates the European Union around a Franco-German core.

As for the contents, consisting of "special relationships" with the White house, the foreign office supported the Atlantic roll in the policy of the EU. Entering in 2003, announced by U.S. Secretary of state Colin Powell a "coalition of goodwill"* (сoalition of the willing), the British struck the first blow for the Common foreign and security policy (CFSP), enshrined in the Maastricht Treaty. In addition, the British hard-liners in foreign relations. Cameron was the main initiator of the bombing of Tripoli, which Barack Obama acknowledged a "mistake", as well as military assistance to the opposition and establishing a no-fly zone in Syria. From the latest Downing street refused even after entering the Russian VKS. 1 June the British Ambassador Matthew Rycroft demanded air humanitarian convoys to besieged areas of Syria [4]. Sanctions against the Arab regimes and Russia also pressed by the British. At a joint press conference during the recent Obama's visit to London, Mr Cameron said: "Britain has played a really important role and continues to play an important role in guaranteeing the implementation of the sanctions (against Russia — K. G.) and their conservation. I'm not sure that it happened if we were not there" [5].

It would be naive to expect a 180-degree turn in the course of the European Union. Pro-American lobby in the EU is still strong, especially as the Chancellor of Germany is a Christian Democrat Angela Merkel. As long as Obama heads the "Oval office", the German leader will try to expedite the signing of the Transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP). At the same time, despite the exit of the UK, most EU countries will retain her mutual commitments to the Alliance. However, Brexit could be a step to optimisation, independence and "demilitarization" are still emerging common foreign policy of the European Union.


[1] REGNUM news Agency (may 10, 2016). The withdrawal of Britain from the EU will create a "Domino effect".

[2] EurActiv (may 31, 2016). EU to label Russia a ‘strategic challenge’

[3] retrieved February 20, 2016). Cameron said that has made for the UK special status in the EU.

[4] REGNUM news Agency (June 1, 2016). The UN security Council considers the air convoys to Syria

[5] Remarks by the President Obama and Prime Minister Cameron in Joint Press Conference. 10 Downing Street, London,England. 22 April 2016.

* Eastern Europe (Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Baltic States), in 2003, included in the us-led coalition in Iraq, at that time, not joined the European Union.

Kamran Hasanov

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