Britain 'still part of Europe'
Top Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson yesterday sought to build bridges with Europe and with defeated Britons who voted to remain in the EU in last week's historic referendum.
Johnson, a former London mayor now a favourite to succeed outgoing Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron, said there would be an "intensifying" of cooperation with Europe despite the vote to quit the EU.
"I cannot stress too much that Britain is part of Europe," Johnson wrote in his regular column in the Daily Telegraph newspaper.
He also said there was no need to rush Britain's exit from the EU, and also played down the prospect of Scottish independence.
"The only change -- and it will not come in any great rush -- is that the UK will extricate itself from the EU's extraordinary and opaque system of legislation," he wrote.
"EU citizens living in this country will have their rights fully protected, and the same goes for British citizens living in the EU," he said.
"British people will still be able to go and work in the EU; to live; to travel; to study; to buy homes and settle down."
But Johnson said Britain, the first country in the 28-member bloc to vote to leave, would retain close ties with Europe.
Johnson also urged Brexit supporters to "build bridges" with Britons who had supported staying.
“They are our neighbours, brothers and sisters who did what they passionately believe was right."