Hollande: Future of EU hangs in balance with British referendum

French President Francois Hollande said Wednesday that the future of the Europe Union is at stake in Britain's vote on whether or not to leave the union.

Hollande spoke after meeting in Paris with Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico, in comments carried by the AFP news agency on the eve of a landmark referendum in which Britons will choose between leaving the EU - the so-called Brexit option - or remaining in the bloc.

He said Paris would consider the consequences of a departure by the British to be "irreversible," adding that non-access to the European common market would be a grave risk for London.

Hollande, a moderate socialist, has advocated consistently for Britons to choose to remain in the EU.

Speaking earlier in the week, he invoked the historical and cultural ties that bind Britain to the rest of Europe, saying that Britain represents European values.

But he has also warned that a Brexit would have consequences for Britain-France relations, including in the management of a border crossing at Calais, which has been a magnet for irregular migration and potential asylum seekers.

Last update: Fri, 24/06/2016 - 08:49

More from Europe

Norway: No suspects linked to stolen gate from former Nazi camp

Norwegian police said Saturday they had no suspects linked to the find of a gate believed to have been stolen in...

Scottish village gets 384,000-pound gift from former German POW

A village in Scotland has received a gift of 384,000 pounds (489,000 dollars) from a German soldier who was held...

German police record 877 attacks against refugee homes this year

There have been 877 attacks against refugee homes in Germany so far in 2016, police said Saturday, suggesting that...

Christmas tree thieves in Germany drunkenly stumble into police

Two drunk Christmas tree thieves in the south-western German city of Ulm were caught red-handed when they were...

Two migrants die in Austria while hiding in freight train

Two migrants have died in Austria while hiding in a goods train, police said on Saturday.