The UK should not consider joining French President Emmanuel Macron’s new European club, a recent poll of Express.co.uk readers has found. Mr Macron is founding a new alliance of EU and non-EU states titled the European Political Community (EPC) as a “new space” for international co-operation. Prime Minister Liz Truss could sign the UK up to join the new political “club of nations” ahead of the first meeting in Prague next month.
Ms Truss’s spokesperson said: “The Prime Minister wants to see more details before giving her view.”
Should Ms Truss sign up, the UK could improve strained relations with the European Union following Brexit.
Mr Macron proposed the idea in May and invited EU countries and neighbouring nations – including the UK, Ukraine, Moldova and Balkan states – to be involved.
He suggested that the group could discuss matters related to security, energy, transport and freedom of movement.
In a speech at the Conference on the Future of Europe, he said: “It is our historic obligation…to create what I would describe before you today as a European Political Community.
He added: “It would bring our Europe together, respecting its true geography, on the basis of its democratic values, with the desire to preserve the unity of our continent and by preserving the strength and ambition of our integration.”
In a poll that ran from midday on Saturday, September 24, to 3pm on Sunday, September 25, Express.co.uk asked readers: “Should the UK consider joining Macron’s new European club?”
In total, 8,615 people cast their votes with the vast majority, 91 percent (7,401 people) answering “no”, the UK should not consider joining the EPC.
A further eight percent (688 people) said “yes” the UK should, while one percent (76 people) said they did not know.
From the hundreds of comments left below the accompanying article, it was clear readers were not in favour of Mr Truss getting the UK involved with the EPC.
One reader, username Grimreaper commented: “No way, keep well clear.”
Username P23969595W said: “I believe this would be a grave mistake.”
Another, username Spikecfc, said: “Ridiculous proposal.”
And username Worldwatcher wrote: “There is no economic, political, security or military benefit to the UK by joining or even being a recognised observer of such an organization. Steer clear Prime Minister Truss!”
Brexiteer Mark Francois warned earlier this week that the UK should have “nothing to do” with the new group.
He told Express.co.uk earlier this week: “Non, merci! As a country, we did not spend nearly five years of arguing, from the 2016 referendum to finally departing the EU in early 2020, only to commence rejoining the organisation, all over again, just under a different guise.
“President Macron’s federalist ambitions are already an open secret right across Europe and we should have nothing to do with them.”
However, director of the Centre for European Reform think-tank, Charles Grant, said that French officials had told him that the British participation in the Prague summit would help UK-France relations.
He said: “Macron thinks this is really important for discussing strategic issues and he wants the British to take part. The French say that the Brits can help to shape how the EPC emerges.”