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Saturday, February 27, 2021

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    Brexit news: EU ordered to drive wedge between UK as revenge for Brexit | Politics | News

    Influential MEPs want top eurocrat Ursula von der Leyen to undermine our Union and invite Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to join EU schemes. The move is seen as red meat for Nicola Sturgeon’s Scottish nationalists whose independence campaign is rooted in pro-Brussels sentiment. One insider suggested it was a deliberate “middle finger” to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s efforts to reunite the UK after Brexit.

    The source said: “It definitely raised an eyebrow, basically a middle finger to Westminster.”

    German MEP David McAllister, the EU Parliament’s Brexit chief, and former Polish foreign minister Radek Sikorski are the leading the efforts.

    In a letter to Commission President Mrs von der Leyen, they call for the bloc to invite Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish students to take part of the EU’s Erasmus student exchange scheme.

    They wrote: “As voiced by many on both sides of the Channel, we are deeply saddened and concerned to have learnt that the Government of the United Kingdom decided to leave the Erasmus+ programme.

    “The Erasmus+ programme has proven to have a significant impact on young people’s lives in Europe – not only on their language, cultural and personal skills, but also on their motivation to strengthen a peaceful and solidary European society.”

    The MEPs added: “We recognise a pronounced aspiration coming from Scotland and Wales to enable students to continue participating in this programme.”

    Downing Street decided not to join the Erasmus scheme after Brexit, instead opting to set up a British alternative offering students from disadvantaged backgrounds opportunities to study around the world.

    Sources say Prime Minister Mr Johnson felt the EU programme didn’t fit in with his “levelling up” agenda because it favours wealthier participants.

    Encouraging MEPs to join their campaign, German Terry Reintke accused No10 of “leaving many young people without the chance to develop close ties with their European neighbours”.

    She added: “The abandonment of the programme will not only hurt future opportunities in the scientific community, but in civil society overall.”

    MUST READ: Brexit POLL: Do you think the UK will Rejoin the EU? VOTE HERE

    Earlier this week the EU was accused of trying to “brainwash” British students after the bloc announced plans to enhance ties with UK schools.

    Former Brexit Party MEP Alex Phillips said: “Far from content that Britain is striking out on its own, the EU appears to be clinging to the hope that the next generation can be brainwashed into taking us back in.

    “When the freedoms that Brexit brings home are fully restored and we compare our own situation to that on the Continent in a couple of years, I am very confident thoughts of getting tangled back up again in the anti-democratic blob will be far from anyone’s mind.”


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