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Merkel ally floats idea of broader talks with UK if Brexit delayed
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Mar 15, 2019 3:53 PM 1+ week ago

BERLIN (Reuters) - Delaying Britain's exit from the European Union could present an opportunity to rework the bloc's approach to negotiating with London, an ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday.

A possible delay to the March 29 exit date, which British lawmakers voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to seek, will top the agenda when EU leaders meet in Brussels late next week.

While German conservatives would prefer Britain to stay in the EU or else adopt Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit divorce deal, senior conservative lawmaker Detlef Seif said that failing those scenarios he would back a delay until end-2020.

In the event of a such delay, Seif told Reuters: "I am of the view that we should change the EU's guidelines."

After Britain voted to leave in 2016, European negotiators stuck firmly to a two-stage approach, refusing to discuss anything about future trading ties until London settled its financial obligations, agreed mutually acceptable rules for expatriate citizens, and found ...

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