Europe Facing Huge Challenges After UK Vote

June 25, 2016  

When David Cameron came asking for reform, they assessed the risk of a Brexit.,They made some concessions but not the fundamental reform the British Prime Minister had promised. ,The jeopardy they had to weigh up was the possibility of losing one of Europe’s key players and second biggest economy.,They underestimated the risk of that happening and that gamble has not paid off.:: Cameron Resigns After UK Votes To Leave EU,But public displays of contrition are unlikely here.,The tone was set by the first European leader to react. ,European Council President, Donald Tusk, led the negotiations with Mr Cameron.,He appeared shaken when he faced the cameras but made it clear what his priority now is.,The man who had warned a Brexit could spell “the end of Western civilisation” sought to reassure Europeans.,The union is ready for Britain leaving because of procedures laid down in its treaties he claimed, as if it is as simple as that.,The priority will be to contain the threat.,First the threat of instability and market chaos.,Any ambiguous response from EU leaders will increase uncertainty.So we are seeing a controlled, co-ordinated response. ,We saw it in the closing stages of the campaign.,‘In is in and out is out’ was the mantra spouted by top EU leaders and more lowly ministers in individual governments.,A firm, clear line will be repeated across the union.,Expect officials not to say too much and to stay on message.,:: Live: Results And Reaction As UK Votes Out,The second threat is contagion.,More Germans, Greeks and Spanish people regard the EU unfavourably than favourably.,There is a clear appetite for referendums in other countries too.,The EU will do whatever it takes to see off that threat. Britain should not be an inspiration to others.,So the chances of the UK being offered a second deal by Europe, so it can hold another referendum now seem remote indeed. ,Equally Europe cannot afford to be generous in the deal it offers Britain in the thorny negotiations ahead, on the terms of the UK’s exit.,But there is also no doubt the  EU will have to change.,:: UK Votes To Leave EU: A Complete Guide,Despite the advice of a raft of institutions, experts, multinational organisations, the leader of the free world and every single other European country, a majority of British people, however slim, have rejected their project.,Even before this historic vote, EU leaders were saying there has to be reform, shocked by the support for a Brexit gathering steam and aware it was echoed by sentiment in other countries. ,This morning, Mr Tusk sought solace by quoting the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche.,”It is true that the past years have been the most difficult ones in the history of our union, but I always remember what my father used to tell me – 'What does not kill you make you stronger'.”,The challenge for Mr Tusk and fellow European leaders will be trying to prove that’s true.