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EU Commission president nominee says open to further Brexit extension

EU Commission president nominee says open to further Brexit extension
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BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Germany’s Ursula von der Leyen said on Monday she would support giving Britain more time to negotiate its exit from the European Union as part of a series of promises to persuade EU lawmakers to back her as European Commission president.

“If elected, I am ready to pave the way to the ambitious and strategic partnership we want to build with the United Kingdom. Should more time be required and should there be good reasons provided, I will support a further extension if good reasons are provided,” von der Leyen said in letters to the socialists and liberals in the European Parliament seen by Reuters.

EU lawmakers will cast their vote in a secret ballot on Tuesday amid worries that von der Leyen will fail to garner the absolute majority required. The greens have already said they will oppose her nomination.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee and Francesco Guarascio; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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