Ahead of a crunch summit next week, Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokesman
Steffen Seibert said Berlin welcomed the British parliament's vote on Wednesday against a no-deal Brexit.
“Nevertheless it is clear that the next steps, the next proposal on how to move forward must come from Britain,” he told reporters.
Seibert stressed it was in “no one's interest” for London to crash out of the EU on March 29th without an agreement on the future relationship with the bloc.
He noted that the EU summit on March 21st-22nd in Brussels “will of course deal with the (Brexit) issue intensively”.
But after British MPs on Thursday voted to ask the EU to delay Brexit, Seibert said any such request would have to be formally submitted to the other 27 member states, debated and decided on.
“I do not want to pre-empt those talks,” he said.
EU leaders have repeatedly said they would consider any request from London.
But they also want to know how long the extension would be — and what it would be used for — before they gather in Brussels.
After Merkel's joint press conference on Tuesday with Belgium Prime Minister Charles Michel, Seibert summed up the discussion.
“Wide-ranging proposals have once again been made on the part of the EU to find answers to Britain's concerns,” he wrote. “It is now up to the British Parliament to make decisions.”
Kanzlerin #Merkel nach dem Gespräch mit Belgiens PM @CharlesMichel zu #Brexit: Seitens der EU wurden noch einmal weitreichende Vorschläge gemacht, um auf die Sorgen Großbritanniens Antworten zu finden. Jetzt ist es Aufgabe des britischen Parlaments Entscheidungen zu treffen. pic.twitter.com/WAep2dtJOm
— Steffen Seibert (@RegSprecher) March 12, 2019