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>> Boris Johnson just made his first trip to Berlin as British foreign secretary to meet with his German counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier and discuss Brexit, the Ukraine crisis, as well as the crisis in Syria. I am Noah Barkin, special correspondent for Europe at Reuters in Berlin. This was not an easy trip for Johnson.
The German government has been very critical of his stance during the Brexit campaign. Steinmeier, his counterpart, was not in a joking mood, despite Johnson's attempts to lighten the atmosphere by kicking off his remarks in German. Steinmeier had three main messages for Johnson. He warned against any delay in Britain invoking article 50, in other words, triggering divorce proceedings with the EU.
Steinmeier was very clear, it has to happen by the end of March. He also said Berlin's top priority was to keep the EU 27, the remaining 27 member states in the EU, united, not to make concessions to Britain. Johnson, for his part, was in a conciliatory mood. He described the Brexit negotiations as a win-win for Britain and the EU.
>> Into a win-win discussion.>> But that's not how it's seen in Berlin or other continental capitals. It's seen much more as a zero sum game. And it's clear from the visit today that Johnson and British Prime Minister Theresa May, are facing very tough negotiations with the EU next year.
>> Thank you.