German president: let’s make English the official EU language so that UK does not leave
Story Code : 242168
The president earned applause for his remarks, made in Berlin on Friday in a speech on Europe’s future at a time of rising German scepticism towards Brussels.
“Dear English, Scots, Welsh, Northern Irish and new British citizens, we want to continue having you on board,” he said. “We need your experience as the oldest parliamentary democracy, we need your traditions, your sober-mindedness and your courage,” said the president.
The remarks, which took up two minutes of his hour-long speech, followed David Cameron’s pledge to call a referendum on Britain’s EU relationship, a prospect that has caused much consternation and criticism in Berlin.
Later on in the speech, which was made at his Berlin residence, Gauck cracked a subtle joke about the prospect of Britain leaving the EU, when he referred to the union’s “27 states” before smirking and correcting himself, saying to laughter from the audience: “No, 28 of course.”