# Official Commentary of Olga Makeeva on the European Union Membership Referendum held in Great Britain

On Thursday, June 23, the historic referendum was held in Great Britain. The citizens of the United Kingdom chose future of the country, namely whether to leave the EU or follow their own path. More than 70 % of the residents participated in the plebiscite, and 52 % of them voted to leave the EU.

In recent years, the European Union as the image of a family for the Europeans loses its appeal. Financial and economic difficulties haunt the Europeans more and more. The flows of migrants swept over Europe in recent years, become a burden for the European Union members` economies, a factor of increase in crime rates and in social unrest. Brussels as the centre of decision making proved to be unable to cope with these problems. Therefore, the statements on revising the structure of the European Union itself appear more and more often.

The ideas of prosperous life for every citizen turned against the Europeans themselves. Low-skilled and often having no education, the migrants quickly took  up posts in the sphere of low-paid and unpopular professions and then, in view of their habits, live at the expense of the countries which host them, enjoying rather good payments and benefits. Parasitic attitude quickly turned into a habit, and the Europeans got the whole class of idlers who are not ready, unable and, above all, unwilling to work.

This problem proved to be the most acute in Britain. The British Isles are quite attractive for migrants. The laws for immigrants had been mild until recently. High standards of living and social security as well as perfect legislative system are the main reasons why the migrants would like to stay in the United Kingdom forever. The number of immigrants has reached its maximum in recent years. According to the surveys, the citizens think that Britain is overpopulated and decisive action concerning restriction on entry for immigrants is needed. It turned out the decisive argument for most citizens in the voting in the referendum. Migration issues provoked the most heated debates before the voting and, to put it mildly, dissatisfaction of the British dealt particularly with the new comers. Now the question arises on the status of specialists and workers from the EU countries who can still stay and work in the United Kingdom as before. But it is a difficult question what the British parliamentarians will do to them. It is not clear yet what the rest of Europe will do. How shall it act? How shall it build up economic ties now? London is not obliged to react to and fulfill recommendations of Brussels. It is difficult to assume how it will affect the British and the EU`s economies. But it is not the crucial problem. Great Britain created a precedent which other EU members can follow. It is enough to implement Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty which describes the procedure of leaving the EU in writing or to deliver it at the session of the European Council, with it being fixed in a shorthand report of the session. This process is quite long and will last for two years. Great Britain should end all negotiations on withdrawal from the EU by this time.

Probably, we observe the beginning of reformatting of the European Union`s essence and structure. Time will show if it will be a civilized divorce or all will leave like rats desert sinking ship. On our part, we hope the EU will try to close “the Ukrainian issue” on the threshold of oncoming problems and will take a more proactive stance in influencing the Ukrainian partners concerning the implementation of the Minsk agreements from their side.

Olga Makeeva, People`s Council Deputy Chairman of the Donets People`s Republic

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