Paris and Berlin 'confident' in EU future

6th June 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 5 (AFP) - The foreign ministers of France and Germany reaffirmed their strong ties and expressed their countries' willingness to help see the EU through its political crisis, France's foreign ministry spokesman said Sunday.

PARIS, June 5 (AFP) - The foreign ministers of France and Germany reaffirmed their strong ties and expressed their countries' willingness to help see the EU through its political crisis, France's foreign ministry spokesman said Sunday.  

New French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy and Germany's Joschka Fischer "reaffirmed the indispensable nature of the Franco-German relationship" in telephone talks on Saturday, said spokesman Jean-Baptiste Mattei.  

They also expressed "confidence in the European project" and the need for Paris and Berlin to be active in helping to steer the bloc through the crisis sparked by the French and Dutch rejections of the EU constitution, he noted.  

Douste-Blazy, who replaced Michel Barnier in the new French government formed in the wake of last Sunday's French defeat of the EU treaty in a referendum, was soon to visit Fischer in Berlin, the Quai d'Orsay said.  

French President Jacques Chirac travelled to the German capital on Saturday for crisis talks with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, during which they agreed that the process of ratifying the constitution should move forward.  

Every EU member country has "the right and the duty" to take its own decision on the constitution, German government spokesman Bela Anda said after the two leaders met for dinner.  

Political observers said Saturday's meeting between Chirac and Schroeder was designed to show that France and Germany remain the powerhouse of the EU.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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