May vraagt steun voor Brexitplan in open brief aan Britse volk

May vraagt steun voor Brexitplan in open brief aan Britse volk

Foto: EPA-EFE

De Britse premier Theresa May heeft zich in een brief rechtstreeks tot het Britse volk gericht, nu het scepticisme in Groot-Brittannië groot is over het Brexit-akkoord met de Europese Unie. Ze vroeg de Britten in de zondag gepubliceerde ‘brief aan de natie’ om de Brexit-deal te steunen.

“Een nieuw hoofdstuk in ons nationaal leven gaat van start”, schreef May. Na het vertrek uit de EU eind maart 2019 komt er een moment van “vernieuwing en verzoening” voor de hele natie. Voor- en tegenstanders van de uitstap uit de EU moeten dan weer één volk worden, volgens May.

Groot-Brittannië krijgt door de Brexit weer de controle over zijn geld, zijn wetten en zijn grenzen. Het is belangrijk zich nu weer op belangrijke thema’s te concenteren, zoals de economie en de nationale gezondheidsdienst NHS, klinkt het. De NHS geldt als zwak en overbelast.

Wellicht is de brief onderdeel van een nieuwe strategie: May wendt zich sinds een paar dagen regelmatig tot het grote publiek en het bedrijfsleven. Britse media vermoeden dat ze zo de druk op het parlement in Londen wil verhogen, dat het akkoord nog moet goedkeuren. Naast de oppositie hebben veel Brexit-hardliners van Mays eigen conservatieve partij aangegeven tegen te stemmen. Hetzelfde geldt voor de Noord-Ierse DUP, waar Mays minderheidregering van afhangt. De stemming moet in de eerste helft van december plaatsvinden.

De Europese lidstaten zullen deze zondag op een speciale Europese top in Brussel het uittredingsverdrag goedkeuren. Ook May wordt daar verwacht.

- De volledige brief van Theresa May (in het Engels) -

When I became your prime minister the United Kingdom had just voted to leave the European Union.

From my first day in the job, I knew I had a clear mission before me – a duty to fulfil on your behalf: to honour the result of the referendum and secure a brighter future for our country by negotiating a good Brexit deal with the EU.

Throughout the long and complex negotiations that have taken place over the last year and a half, I have never lost sight of that duty.

Today, I am in Brussels with the firm intention of agreeing a Brexit deal with the leaders of the other 27 EU nations.

It will be a deal that is in our national interest – one that works for our whole country and all of our people, whether you voted ‘Leave’ or ‘Remain’.

It will honour the result of the referendum.

We will take back control of our borders, by putting an end to the free movement of people once and for all.

Instead of an immigration system based on where a person comes from, we will build one based on the skills and talents a person has to offer.

We will take back control of our money, by putting an end to vast annual payments to the EU.

Instead, we will be able to spend British taxpayers’ money on our own priorities, like the extra £394m per week that we are investing in our long-term plan for the NHS.

And we will take back control of our laws, by ending the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice in the UK.

In future, our laws will be made, interpreted and enforced by our own courts and legislatures.

We will be out of EU programmes that do not work in our interests: out of the Common Agricultural Policy, that has failed our farmers, and out of the Common Fisheries Policy, that has failed our coastal communities.

Instead, we will be able to design a system of agricultural support that works for us and we will be an independent coastal state once again, with full control over our waters.

The deal also protects the things we value.

EU citizens who have built their lives in the United Kingdom will have their rights protected, as will UK citizens living elsewhere in the EU.

A free trade area will allow goods to flow easily across our borders, protecting the many skilled jobs right across the country that rely on integrated supply-chains.

Because our European friends will always be our allies in the fight against terrorism and organised crime, the deal will ensure that security co-operation will continue, so we can keep our people safe.

As prime minister of the United Kingdom, I have from day one been determined to deliver a Brexit deal that works for every part of our country – for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, for our Overseas Territories like Gibraltar, and also for the Crown Dependencies.

This deal will do that.

Crucially, it will protect the integrity of our United Kingdom and ensure that there will be no hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland – so people can live their lives as they do now.

It is a deal for a brighter future, which enables us to seize the opportunities that lie ahead.

Outside the EU, we will be able to sign new trade deals with other countries and open up new markets in the fastest-growing economies around the world.

With Brexit settled, we will be able to focus our energies on the many other important issues facing us here at home: keeping our economy strong, and making sure every community shares in prosperity; securing our NHS for the future, giving every child a great start in life, and building the homes that families need; tackling the burning injustices that hold too many people back, and building a country for the future that truly works for everyone.

On 29 March next year, the United Kingdom will leave the European Union.

We will then begin a new chapter in our national life.

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