Paris, Berlin want their ‘own Europe’

15th December 2003, Comments 0 comments

15 December 2003 , VIENNA - EU Agriculture Commissioner Franz Fischler accused French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on Monday of "wanting to create their own Europe". At a press conference, Austrian politician Fischler warned against the formation of a "core Europe", saying it would "no longer care about the other states". If one or two states had their way, there would also be the danger that two or three further groups would be formed which wanted to push through their

15 December 2003

VIENNA - EU Agriculture Commissioner Franz Fischler accused French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on Monday of "wanting to create their own Europe".

At a press conference, Austrian politician Fischler warned against the formation of a "core Europe", saying it would "no longer care about the other states".

If one or two states had their way, there would also be the danger that two or three further groups would be formed which wanted to push through their own interests. "That would be the beginning of the end of a joint Europe", said Fischler.

He was referring to remarks after the failure of the constitution- giving EU summit at the weekend. At the time, Chirac suggested forming "a group of pioneers" to bring Europe forward. Schroeder did not exclude an initiative for a "core Europe".

At his press conference, Fischler said he did not believe Austria could be part of a "core". It would have no problems economically, but it would in terms of security policy, and also in the legal area as it rejected the idea of a European public prosecutor.

Fischler said that a "two-speed" EU with varying rates of integration would be no problem in principle. He pointed out that the introduction of the joint currency euro was an example.

The agriculture commissioner said it was a "dilemma" that national interests were put before EU interests. Governments did not realize that EU interests were "the interests of all", and that problems could be solved in the EU framework "more simply, better, and more efficiently".

Fischler said he did not believe an agreement on the EU constitution was likely in the first half of next year. The first real opportunity would be in the summer, immediately after the elections to the European Parliament in June. That was the time when a new EU Commission president must be appointed.

 

DPA
Subject: German news 

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