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Allowing the UK to simply withdraw A50 and just pretend the last eighteen months never happened would be suicidal for the EU. What about existing opt-outs, rebates and other concessions for the UK in the EU? What's to stop other EU countries to use the same ploy (no British exceptionalism, please)?.

Should such a revocation ever happen (looks highly hypothetical today), the EU should think and negotiate long and hard, not to "punish" the UK, but for protecting the union from future blackmail tactics.

From a Dutch academic:

Never mind 'hard Brexit', let's talk 'hard remain' - EUObserver

They should stand firm, not out of spite, but to avoid a never-ending wrangling about attempts to maximise special treatment and benefits for the UK within the EU.

Herein lies the danger of even allowing the unilateral revocation of the Article 50 notification to leave the EU.

For instance, after a revocation, the threat of new referendums followed by tedious withdrawal negotiations would be hanging like a sword of Damocles - ready to fall at any moment and cut through the fabric that holds together the EU as an economic and political entity.

Moreover, if this strategy were to work for the UK, what is to stop other disgruntled member state governments from trying the same?

Hence, it would only be consistent to put all British opt-outs and other forms of special treatment on the table, with a view to phasing them out in exchange for letting the UK rescind its withdrawal.

The choice is then a clear-cut one: Have your cake or eat it.

Either Britain can proceed with "taking back control" and become a normal, sovereign state, or it can reassert control within the EU's common institutions and become a normal EU member state.

by Bernard on Thu Oct 19th, 2017 at 12:33:55 PM EST
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