Thursday, 30 June 2016

The Guardian: With this shock a new, EU-friendly Britain is born

The Guardian: With this shock a new, EU-friendly Britain is born

by Natalie Nougayrede

It is fascinating to note that in just a few days Britain has become a country where so many people are now ready to speak positively and passionately about EU membership. With Brexit-hovering seen as a near-death experience for an entire country, people are scrambling to express their emotions about wanting to stay in.

I can only think of one other country where there was a (relatively comparable) public groundswell of sudden pro-EU sentiment: that’s Ukraine, in December 2013, when a generation understood it was being deprived of a future it thought was all but guaranteed, and then made its frustration very clear.

Ukrainians flocked on to the main square of their capital after learning they were about to be denied plans for an association agreement with the EU. That was the start of the Maidan movement. Now in Britain social media is awash with calls to reject the breakup of links between the UK and the EU.

Tens of thousands signed up to join Tuesday’s event at Trafalgar Square, and more rallies are being announced. On Facebook, organisers said: “Regardless of the referendum result, we stand alongside the people of Europe to show we are inclusive, open and patient – we stay with Europe!”

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