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British membership positive for EU, says former chief Delors

Delors would respect the British voters' decision in next week's referendum on whether to remain in the EU. Photograph: (Getty)

Reuters Brussels Jun 16, 2016, 11.28 AM (IST)
Former European Commission President Jacques Delors, the father of modern European integration, said in a statement on Thursday that British membership is positive both for the United Kingdom and for the European Union.

Delors, 89, who clashed frequently with former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher during his decade at the head of the EU executive from 1985 to 1994, said he would respect the British voters' decision in next week's referendum on whether to remain in the EU.

"I consider the UK's participation in the European Union to be a positive element both for the British and for the Union," Delors said.

His statement was emailed to dispel what  the Jacques Delors Institute called inaccurate rumours that he favoured a Brexit to enable the remaining EU members to move ahead with deeper integration.
(Reuters)
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