September 12, 2018 / 8:05 AM / 8 days ago

EU's Juncker confirms aims for close ties with UK after Brexit

STRASBOURG (Reuters) - European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker on Wednesday renewed a pledge of close trade and security ties with Britain after Brexit but said the European Union would not compromise on key withdrawal terms.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker delivers a speech during a debate on The State of the European Union at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, September 12, 2018. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

Delivering his annual state-of-the-union speech to the European Parliament, Juncker said the EU will not allow Britain to participate only in some parts of the bloc’s single market after Brexit without honouring all of the rules.

“This is why we want to find solutions that prevent a hard border in Northern Ireland,” he said, adding the EU will stand in solidarity with Ireland.

Reporting by Alastair Macdonald,; Writing by Gabriela Baczynska; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg

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