February 23, 2018 / 6:51 PM / a year ago

EU leaders agree to spend more on migration, defence, security

BRUSSELS, Feb 23 (Reuters) - European Union leaders agreed on Friday to spend more on common defence and security policy, as well as on “fighting illegal migration” in their next long-term budget after Britain leaves the bloc, the chairman of EU leaders, Donald Tusk, said.

Speaking at a news conference after a meeting of 27 EU leaders in Brussels, Tusk said, however, that an ambitious deadline for reaching an agreement on the shape of the 2021-2027 budget by the end of the year seemed difficult.

Tusk said many of the leaders were ready to contribute more money to the joint pot to compensate for the loss of revenue after Britain leaves in 2019, as well as to finance the new joint policies - but that others were less forthcoming. (Reporting By Jan Strupczewski and Gabriela Baczynska)

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