February 15, 2016 / 12:40 PM / 2 years ago

EU's Tusk: talks to keep Britain in EU at critical moment

BUCHAREST (Reuters) - European Council leader Donald Tusk said an EU summit in Brussels on Thursday will be crucial for the future of the bloc, with talks to keep Britain in the EU at critical moment.

European Council President Donald Tusk gestures during a news conference after a European Union leaders summit in Brussels, Belgium December 18, 2015. REUTERS/Eric Vidal

Tusk said the risk of a break-up was real and that there was a need to handle the negotiations over Britain with care.

“After my talks today with President Iohannis, Prime Minister Cameron and President Hollande and before meeting Prime Minister Tsipras, Prime minister Sobotka and Chancellor Merkel tomorrow, I have only one political reflection. This is a critical moment,” Tusk told reporters after a meeting with Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis.

“It is high time we started listening to each other’s arguments more than our own. The risk of a break-up is real because this process is indeed very fragile and must be handled with care. What is broken cannot be mended.”

Tusk said that Britain’s membership in the EU was at stake.

“At stake is also the future of our European Union, where we will all have to decide together and where we cannot and will not compromise on European values.”

Reporting by Luiza Ilie, Writing by Radu Marinas, Editing by Angus MacSwan

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