Spain PM to host summit on Brexit

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Madrid, April 10 (IANS) Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy will host a summit here on Monday with the leaders of six other southern European nations.

The meeting is to focus on the future of the European Union (EU) in light of Britain’s decision to leave the bloc, as well as the future negotiations that would allow this to happen, Efe news reported.

Those set to attend Monday’s meeting include the Presidents of France, Francois Hollande; Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades; and the Prime Ministers of Greece, Alexis Tsipras; Italy, Paolo Gentiloni; Portugal, Antonio Costa; and Malta, Joseph Muscat.

The gathering would be the third of its kind among southern European nations, the last ones taking place in Athens in September 2016 and in Lisbon at the end of January.

With UK Prime Minister Theresa May now having formally notified the EU of her country’s wish to leave the bloc, Brexit is expected to feature on the agenda for the talks in Madrid.

Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, whose country holds the rotating presidency of the EU, is scheduled to make an initial statement to the other leaders, at the invitation of Rajoy.

Spanish government sources told Efe news that Madrid hoped a common position would be ratified among the seven southern European countries that could be shared by the other remaining 20 members of the EU.

–IANS

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