Chirac reaffirms support for Romania's EU bid

22nd November 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Nov 21 (AFP) - French president Jacques Chirac on Monday assured his Romanian counterpart Traian Basescu of France's full support for Bucharest's bid to join the European Union.

PARIS, Nov 21 (AFP) - French president Jacques Chirac on Monday assured his Romanian counterpart Traian Basescu of France's full support for Bucharest's bid to join the European Union.

"The president of the republic recalled France's commitment" in support of Romania's candidacy, describing Romanians as "brothers in Europe", Chirac's office said following their talks at the Elysée palace.

During the meeting, Chirac "reiterated his wish to see Romania become a full EU member, which implies that it meet all of its obligations," the presidency said, adding that France would work with Romania to help it do so.

Romania and Bulgaria both hope to join the European Union in January 2007, but the bloc has voiced serious concerns about the pace of reforms -- in particular the fight against corruption -- in the former communist states.

The European Commission is to review the countries' progress in mid-2006 and has warned that it could push back their entry until 2008 unless they have made sufficient progress.

"Relations between France and Romania have traditionally been very good and we are laying the basis of future cooperation between our two countries within the European Union," Basescu said following the talks.

Bulgaria and Romania were both left out of the European Union's expansion last year from 15 to 25 members, which included the admission of eight ex-communist states.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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