Theresa May today announced Germany and France will be her first foreign tour destinations as British Prime Minister later this week as her country prepares to leave the European Union.
“The prime minister will make her first overseas visits this week. This will be an opportunity to discuss the bilateral relationship, cooperation on a range of global challenges, and of course how the UK and Germany can work together as the UK prepares to leave the EU,” a Downing Street spokesperson said.
With Brexit at the heart of her premiership, it came as little surprise that May chose the two leading EU economies to kick-start talks over the UK’s future relationship with the economic bloc.
May, 59, will begin talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday, soon after she addresses her first Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of Commons.
After her “bilateral meeting and a working dinner” in Berlin, May will head to Paris on Thursday for talks with French President Francois Hollande during her two-day trip.
The Downing Street spokesperson said Thursday’s meeting with President Hollande at the Elysee Palace would cover Brexit “as well as Thursday’s attack in Nice and counter- terrorism cooperation”.
Last Friday, May made her first trip as prime minister to Scotland, where she held talks with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
Brexit negotiations were again at the centre of their dialogue.
Meanwhile, star Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson arrived in Brussels today for talks with his EU counterparts in his new role as foreign secretary.
“We have to give effect to the will of the people and leave the European Union but… we are not going in any way to abandon our leading role in European participation,” Johnson told reporters.
Britain had voted in favour of Britain’s exit from the EU in a historic referendum on June 23.
It triggered a series of seismic changes in the UK political establishment, with David Cameron resigning as Prime Minister for May to take charge.