Germanys foreign minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, has urged caution after the UK voted to leave the European Union and said that it is important the EU learns from the result. Frank-Walter Steinmeier was speaking ahead of a meeting of the blocs founding members in Berlin on 25 June.
Steinmeier said, Not all answers are lying on the table, thats why it is now essential, above all, that we listen to each other. Listen to each other, that means to feel where expectations, what the sensitivities of European governments are, but also to hear in our own populations what their own expectations are for Europe and that we learn with each other from the result of this vote in Great Britain.
German officials have expressed concern that other countries could look to leave the EU, after Britain voted for a Brexit on 23 June. But Steinmeier urged caution from the other member states, and claimed that not all answers for the now open questions are laid out.
He added, It is completely clear that we now have a situation that allows for neither hysteria nor paralysis. We must not resort to hectic activity, and act as if all the answers are ready. But after the British decision, we mustnt lapse into depression and inactivity.
The British government has two years to negotiate their exit from when Article 50 is invoked. There is no timescale yet in place for this, but UK prime minister David Cameron indicated that it would be in place by October, when he announced he was stepping down on 24 June.