Germany, France Struggle to Hold EU Center Amid Brexit Storm

  • Bloc’s key members seen poorly positioned to mount defense
  • EU’s ambitions seen reduced even if UK only member to leave

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande are trying to hold the rest of the 27 nations of the EU together.

Photographer: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Within hours of Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, nationalist parties across the bloc were clamoring for their own exit referendums, including in France, one half of the two-nation engine that has driven the EU project since its beginnings as a lowly coal and steel union in 1951.

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