With a little over seven weeks to go until Britain votes whether or not to leave his organisation, EU commissioner Jean Claude van Junk has stepped into the Brexit debate with some unusual comments. However, voters may be confused rather than motivated by his message.
Mr van Junk said that Britain would "castrate Europe" if it left, leaving it quite literally a EU-nuch. He said that if the EU was to survive without Britain, then it would have to "grow a pair". He also said that Britain would have a "hairy" and "nuts" time on its own, and it needed the warm body of Europe to make it whole.
This follows on from Angela Merkel's perplexing message last week, when she said that Britain leaving the EU was like pulling the plug on a terminally ill patient, but where the patient himself was pulling his own plug in the hope of being reincarnated as a butterfly, and without knowing if that butterfly would also be terminally ill. To be fair, it sounded a lot better in its original German.
Raging Eurosceptic Nigel Farage was dismissive of the European arguments. He said that leaving the EU was more like cutting off the foot that Britain had shot itself in by joining the EU in the first place.