Thu | Sep 21, 2017

UK's Cameron says leaving EU would increase risk of war

Published:Tuesday | May 10, 2016 | 5:00 AM

LONDON (AP):

Raising the stakes in Britain's European Union (EU) membership debate, Prime Minister David Cameron said yesterday that leaving the bloc would increase the risk of war in Europe.

Cameron's speech on national security came as campaigning ahead of a June 23 vote on the country's EU membership moved into its final weeks.

Cameron said it would be rash to assume that "peace and stability on our continent are assured beyond any shadow of doubt". He said the EU "has helped reconcile countries which were at each other's throats for decades".

"Britain has a fundamental national interest in maintaining common purpose in Europe to avoid future conflict between European countries," he said.

Cameron argued that "isolationism has never served this country well. Whenever we turn our back on Europe, sooner or later, we come to regret it".

The EU was founded after World War II, in part to prevent the continent's nations from waging war ever again. But terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels and the arrival of hundreds of thousands of migrants from the Middle East, Asia and Africa have highlighted the security challenges facing the bloc.