Germany and France have warned that funding cuts to EU programmes after Brexit could damage efforts to tackle illegal immigration and terrorism.
The leaders of both nations today said that spending on these areas should not be compromised. But other wealthy member states have argued that a smaller EU – without the UK – should mean a smaller budget. It comes as leaders meet in Brussels to decide whether to raise contributions or reduce funding to EU programmes.
Arriving for the informal discussions today, German Chancellor Angel Merkel said it was important not to reduce financial support to operations that had proved effective in tackling issues such as terrorism in the Sahel region of north and West Africa.
French President Emmanuel Macron, alongside Mrs Merkel, said that France was also committed in the fight to eradicate terrorism and the trafficking of humans through Africa.
Separately, it has been announced that the UK Prime Minister Theresa May is to deliver a speech setting out her vision for the UK’s future relationship with the EU on 2 March 2018.