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Merkel says EU must be prepared if Brexit talks fail

BERLIN, July 1 (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday the European Union must prepare for a possible failure of talks with Britain over a new trading relationship.

She said talks were to be accelerated in order to achieve an agreement in the autumn that could be ratified by the end of the year.

But the EU "must and should prepare for a situation in which an agreement does not happen," she told Germany's lower house of parliament. (Reporting by Joseph Nasr; Writing by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Thomas Seythal)