The European Union must change "dramatically" if Britain remains a member after Thursday's referendum, Jeremy Corbyn has insisted.

Staying part of the 28-member bloc has "implications", the Labour leader said as he faced an audience of young voters on Sky News.

Mr Corbyn, a long-time critic of the EU who voted against membership of the European Economic Community in 1975, has faced accusations that his campaigning for the Remain camp has been lukewarm.

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He said: "It's a big decision. If we stay in Europe there are implications, if we leave Europe there are massive implications.

"But, it is also a turning point because if we leave I don't think there is an easy way back. If we remain, I believe Europe has got to change quite dramatically to something much more democratic, much more accountable and share our wealth and improve our living standards and our working conditions all across the whole continent."


Mr Corbyn arrived at the west London studios after attending a service in Westminster in honour of Jo Cox, who was killed in her West Yorkshire constituency last week, and paid tribute to the Labour MP.

Mr Corbyn said his support for a Remain vote was "not unconditional by any means" and set out a list of problems with the EU.

He said: "I'm opposed to the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, which is being negotiated largely in secret between the European Union and the US because it would import the worst working conditions and standards from the US into Europe.

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"I'm also opposed to the way in which Europe shields tax havens - this country as well shields tax havens.

"And the way in which systematically big companies are exploiting loopholes in employment laws.

"So I'm calling for a Europe in solidarity.

"But I would also say that if we are to deal with issues like climate change, like environmental issues, you cannot do it within national borders, you can only do it across national borders.

"The refugee crisis has to be dealt with internationally, not just nationally."

He added: "I want to remain in Europe in order to work with others to change it."

Mr Corbyn suggested he would defy EU rules to protect the steel industry and renationalise the railways if he becomes prime minister at the 2020 general election "or sooner".


The Labour leader insisted state aid rules which regulate national governments' support of specific industries and companies were "open to a great deal of interpretation".

He suggested he was willing to take on the EU to fulfil manifesto pledges if Labour took power in the UK.

"As far as I'm concerned if we are elected in 2020 or sooner as a Labour government on a clear manifesto commitment to bring our railways into public ownership, we will do it," he said.

"And if that means an argument, then we'll have that argument."

He added: "Member states do have a right to have publicly owned railway systems - at the moment, the Dutch, the French, the German and Italian and Spanish systems are almost all totally publicly owned."

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On steel, he said: "When the French government decides what it wants to do on its agricultural policy, it does it, and the rest of Europe follows on behind.

"I just think the national governments have to be assertive on this and the state aid rules are open to a great deal of interpretation."

Meanwhile, the Opposition leader insisted he had not changed his mind on Europe after being persuaded by French president Francois Hollande or anyone else.


Mr Corbyn said he voted against the Maastricht Treaty in 1993 because it was about creating a Thatcherite free market Europe with little protection for workers, and that the Lisbon Treaty in 2007 was "a step in the same direction".

But the EU social chapter has won protections for workers such as four weeks holiday and maternity and paternity leave, he added.

Asked whether he had changed his mind after speaking to Mr Hollande, he said: "My head hasn't been turned by anything, my head doesn't get turned."

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Mr Corbyn said he was "not a lover" of the European Union but had come to a rational decision about his support for Remain.

He said: "I'm not a lover of the European Union. I think it's a ration decision. We should stay in order to try and improve but does that change my views on points I've raised on public ownership of railways and things like that? Absolutely not."


Asked if he would shoulder some of the blame if Britain votes to quit, he replied: "I'm not going to take blame for people's decisions. There will be a decision made on Thursday. I'm hoping there is going to be a Remain vote, there may well be a Remain vote, there may well be a Leave vote."

Told he did not sound "too keen" on the EU, he replied: "Whatever the result we have got to work with it."

Mr Corbyn slammed Ukip leader Nigel Farage for promoting a "bigoted" poster hours before the killing of Labour MP Jo Cox, which showed a column of migrants walking through the European countryside under the slogan "Breaking Point".

Drawing applause from the audience, he said "desperate" refugees pose no risk to Britain compared to the threat posed by the "hatred" put on them by the likes of Mr Farage.

"The Syrian refugees are just like all of us in this room, they are fleeing from war looking for somewhere safe to go to," the Labour leader said.

"Surely that has to be a humanitarian response, not the bigoted response of putting up a 32 sheet poster which says a group of desperate people are somehow or other a threat to us.

"No, they're not, they're no threat at all.

"The threat is the hatred that is put towards those people by those people that put up that poster."

Mr Corbyn insisted the refugee crisis needs a cross-border international response although some of the EU and its member states' handling of the situation, such as erecting barriers on borders, has been "appalling".

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He said: "If there was no European Union and instead you had 27 member states - would there be any coordinated response? Probably not.

"Would there be any route out for those refugees? Probably not."

Mr Corbyn said migrants workers should not be blamed for Britons being paid badly and called for an end to the use of zero-hours contracts.

Pressed on how Labour would help workers whose wages were being driven down by migration, he said: "By ensuring that local wage rates are paid, that the minimum wage is respected, that the living wage becomes a reality, £10 an hour seems to me to be the figure that we should be campaigning for, but also to ensure there is lower levels of disparity so people don't necessarily feel so attracted to go and work elsewhere because they get better wages."

The party leader said restricting movement of labour across the EU defeated the point of the Single Market.

Securing refugee status is "very difficult" and detailed checks were carried out on anyone applying for the status," he added.

"The idea that you can just walk in a country and announce you are a refugee and get status is far, far, far from the reality of it."

He said there must be "much greater effort" in achieving a political solution in Syria in an effort to resolve the refugee crisis.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel's open door policy on refugees was a "human response", he said.

Chancellor George Osborne told LBC he believes Leave is losing support because Mr Farage has "taken over" the campaign.

He said: "I have got lots of people I know very well in the Leave campaign and they didn't want to start off this campaign where they got to the position with only a couple of days to go to polling where Nigel Farage appeared to be their principal spokesman.

"But they have allowed him to take it over. They have allowed him to just talk endlessly about foreigners and immigration and of course there are concerns about immigration but it is not the only issue at stake in this referendum.

"I think he misjudges the mood of the nation."


Mr Osborne said the nation is "taking its responsibilities very seriously" and that people want to hear facts, not "inflammatory rhetoric and baseless assertion" which have become the "bread and butter" of the Leave campaign.

Highlighting defections from the Leave camp to Remain, Mr Osborne said: "They are losing support as we approach the key moment when people get to vote and I think that's because they have allowed voices like Farage's to take control and that means that the vote is a vote on Farage's vision of Britain."

Mr Osborne said that even a narrow victory for Remain on June 23 would mean the Europe question would be "resolved" for a generation.

He was also asked if he would consider suspending trading on the FTSE in the event of possible market turmoil following a Brexit vote.

"The Bank of England and the Treasury, Governor Carney and myself, we have of course discussed contingency plans but the sensible thing is to keep those secret and make sure you are well prepared for whatever happens," he said.

However, Mr Osborne said the Government does not have a wider contingency plan for the UK in the event of Brexit.


Both sides of the referendum have faced criticism over the way they have responded to Mrs Cox's death.

David Cameron insisted that his comments about the much-loved MP have been intended purely as a tribute to the Labour MP, after Nigel Farage accused him of a "despicable" attempt to use her death to boost his chance of winning Thursday's EU referendum.

Remain campaign chief Will Straw was attacked after it emerged that he had told team members "we need to recognise that people have been pulled up short by Jo Cox's death".