Hollande vows plan to end Europe's 'lethargy'
French President Francois Hollande on Thursday vowed to launch an initiative to end Europe's "lethargy" and promised closer political union within the bloc in two years.
"If Europe does not advance it will fall or even be wiped out from the world map... My duty is to bring Europe out of its lethargy," he said at the start of a wide-ranging press conference.
Hollande said his first year in power had been entirely devoted to "defending our sovereignty and putting our economy back into shape" but added that the second year would be marked by an "offensive" to kickstart the economies of France and Europe.
The press conference came a day after Hollande's first anniversary in office was marred by news that France had fallen back into recession amid plummeting economic indicators.
© 2013 AFP