WASHINGTON (AP) - The United States respects the decision of the people of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, President Barack Obama said Friday, insisting that the special relationship between Washington and London will endure.
In his first public reaction to the vote, Obama said the people of the U.K. had spoken. Obama had strongly urged that the UK remain in the EU, and the decision is a significant blow to his efforts to counter the isolationist viewpoints taking hold in many parts of the world.
"The United Kingdom and the European Uniion will remain indispensable partners of the United States even as they begin negotiating their ongoing relationship to ensure continued stability, security, and prosperity for Europe, Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the world," Obama said.
Obama's comments came in a written statement issued by the White House while the president was traveling in California.
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