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EU to discuss British 'divorce process' on Wednesday

A man leaves a bank at main train station in Munich, Germany, June 24, 2016 after Britain voted to leave the European Union in the EU BREXIT referendum. REUTERS/Michaela Rehle

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders will meet without the British counterpart David Cameron on Wednesday to discuss the “divorce process” with London after Britons voted to leave the bloc, European Council President Donald Tusk said on Friday.

The 28 EU national leaders will hold a two-day summit from Tuesday afternoon in Brussels. Prime Minister Cameron will brief the other 27 over dinner, summit chairman Tusk wrote in a letter to leaders laying out the agenda for the long-scheduled meeting.

Cameron is then expected to return to London and on Wednesday, for the first time, the remaining 27 leaders will meet in a more informal format without him. Such “informal” summits reflect the fact they do not have decision-making power.

“The 27 will meet informally to discuss the political and practical implications of Brexit,” wrote Tusk, who spoke to Cameron earlier on Friday to discuss the schedule.

“We will discuss the so-called divorce process,” he said, referring to Article 50 of the EU treaty, which allows a government to notify the European Union of its leaving and obliging the bloc to try to negotiate a “withdrawal agreement”.

Reporting by Alastair Macdonald; and Gabriela Baczynska, editing by Robin Emmott