Europe

Brexit: Key quotes from non-UK figures

German Chancellor Angela Merkel (r) and British Prime Minister Theresa May hold a joint news conference in Berlin on 20 July 2016 . Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Angela Merkel (r) says she understands that the UK needs time to start talks on Brexit

Key quotes from high-profile European and other figures on Britain's vote to leave the EU, as compiled by BBC Monitoring between 14 and 21 July.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel

"Nobody wants a long period of limbo. Neither the British people nor the European member states. Everyone has an interest that the preparations are conducted in a thorough manner, that the positions are clear, and I think it is absolutely understandable that Britain needs a certain amount of time for this." (Joint news conference with Theresa May, 20 July, via Reuters)

Image copyright EPA
Image caption Frank-Walter Steinmeier hopes for a quick end to "uncertainty"

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier

"I think we can expect that Britons will act as quickly as possible to end this period of uncertainty in Britain and in Europe." (Interview with Reuters, 20 July)

"Despite Brexit, we need the cooperation with Britain in our international relations, particularly in these times of crisis." (Interview with Reuters, 20 July)

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Image caption German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble; "Limit risks"

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble

"The faster clarity is created, the better it is for limiting the possible risks." (Speaking after a meeting with US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew in Berlin, 14 July, as reported by Handelsblatt)

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Image caption John Kerry says the US is "rooting" for Britain

US Secretary of State John Kerry

"As Britain and the EU begin negotiating the new terms of their partnership, America is rooting for and will do all we can to try to encourage and assist in the development of the smoothest possible transition and a highly integrated and collaborative EU/UK relationship." (News conference with Boris Johnson, via Express)

"The British have told us that they can't sign any kind of new trade agreement... until they are no longer a member of the EU. So there is a time period here no matter what, the process that may take at least a couple of years before anyone can contemplate some kind of agreement." (News conference with Boris Johnson, via Reuters)

Image copyright AFP
Image caption French Foreign Minister Ayrault accused Boris Johnson of being a liar

French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault

"The United Kingdom's departure from the European Union happens under good conditions, but not to the EU's detriment. It is not a question of weakening Europeans." (about Boris Johnson, interview with French Europe 1 radio, 14 July)

"I am not at all worried about Boris Johnson, but you know very well what his style, his method is... Did you see what his style was during the campaign? He lied a lot to the British. Now it is he who is up against it in terms of defending his country, as well as for ensuring that the relationship with Europe is clear." (about Boris Johnson, interview with French Europe 1 radio, 14 July)

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Image caption Rebecca Harms was unsure whether Boris Johnson's appointment was a joke

Green leader in the European Parliament, Rebecca Harms

"At first I thought it was a joke. I don't know whether to laugh or cry. But I know that it's not a good thing if irresponsibility in politics is rewarded." (About Boris Johnson's appointment as foreign secretary, 14 July, statement on her website)

Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny

"The discussion and negotiations that take place over the next period should take into account the possibility, however far out it might be, that the clause in the Good Friday Agreement might be triggered, in that if there is a clear evidence of a majority of people wishing to leave the United Kingdom and join the Republic, that should be catered for in the discussions. Because if that possibility were to happen, you would have Northern Ireland wishing to leave the United Kingdom, not being a member of the European Union, and joining the Republic, which will be a member of the EU." (Speaking to reporters on 19 July, via the Irish Independent)

European Council President Donald Tusk

"Told PM @Theresa_May today that we need an orderly, calm #Brexit, something like a 'velvet divorce'." (Tweet after talks with Theresa May on the telephone, 19 July)

Japanese Ambassador to Britain Koji Tsuruoka

"Japan will try and cooperate [with Britain during the Brexit process]. We will convey our thoughts to the British government to help minimise the damage to its economy." (Speaking to the Japanese news agency Kyodo, 19 July, via The Mainichi)

BBC Monitoring reports and analyses news from TV, radio, web and print media around the world. You can follow BBC Monitoring on Twitter and Facebook.

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