‘We will always be friends, Sophie’: EU council president shares heartbreaking Brexit exchange with six-year-old British schoolgirl

'I know we are leaving the EU. But I think we should be friends'

Tom Batchelor
Wednesday 13 March 2019 14:40 GMT
What happens now with Brexit?

Brexit has long come to resemble the messy ending of a long though loveless marriage, replete with resentment and self-perpetuating recriminations.

A British six-year-old, however, may have done more than any one of the numerous negotiators to show the power of quiet diplomacy and sincere affection as opposed to hostility and vitriol.

A supremely heartfelt letter, sent to Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, and shared on his Instagram account, revealed a distinctly softer side to British demands for a close future partnership.

"Dear Mr Tusk," began the handwritten message from Sophie.

"I live in Britain. I know we are leaving the EU. But I think we should be friends."

Accompanied by a unicorn and heart sticker, she continued: "Please may I have a signed photo of you for my Europe book."

As revealed on his official Instagram page, Mr Tusk responded: "We will always be friends, Sophie."

Last year Ivan Rogers, the former UK ambassador to the EU, claimed UK hopes of finding a technical solution to the Irish border issue was viewed in Europe as a "fantasy island unicorn model".

The letter generated a string of supportive comments including many who backed Sophie's appeal for friendship despite the bad-tempered continentatl relations.

"Well said Sophie," wrote one. "Brexit has been so poisonous. We must remain friends."

The response came a day after MPs rejected for the second time Theresa May's withdrawal agreement, plunging the Brexit process even deeper into chaos.

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