Donald Tusk: UK and EU to remain 'closest of allies' following their 'divorce'

European Council president Donald Tusk. Credit: Reuters

The UK and the EU will remain the "closest partners" following the "divorce" between the two, president of the European Council, Donald Tusk has said.

Mr Tusk made clear during a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping and premier Li Keqiang, that for the next two years at least, the UK will remain a member of the European Union and that after that the two will continue to trade closely.

At the meeting in Beijing, European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker added that the UK and the EU have been allies for 40 years, and that there was no place for hostilities or "revenge" following the Brexit decision.

When grilled on his thoughts on Theresa May and the UK's Brexit choices under her, Mr Juncker said that he would not give public advice to her before the two meet in private. Following constant questioning Mr Juncker responded that the summit was not "an exam question" and that it was descending into a discussion on British politics.

The European Commission president added that he will miss David Cameron as the two have developed a strong friendship.