The European Union in a statement have opined that even though the decision by the United Kingdom to leave the EU is regrettable, the union acknowledges and respect the decision.
In a joint statement signed by Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament, Mark Rutte, holder of the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU, and Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, the union noted that the British people have exercised their democratic right.
However, the leadership of the EU further urged the UK to trigger the necessary procedures in negotiating their exit to prevent any form of uncertainty.
READ ALSO: Implications of UK's exit from the EU
“We now expect the United Kingdom government to give effect to this decision of the British people as soon as possible, however painful that process may be. Any delay would unnecessarily prolong uncertainty. We have rules to deal with this in an orderly way…We stand ready to launch negotiations swiftly with the United Kingdom regarding the terms and conditions of its withdrawal from the European Union,” the statement said.
“According to the Treaties which the United Kingdom has ratified, EU law continues to apply to the full to and in the United Kingdom until it is no longer a Member,” the statement added.
The Brits voted in a historic referendum on Thursday to exit the European Union. About 52% voted to leave the European Union while 48% said they should remain.