Thaw in Paris-Warsaw relations

14th January 2005, Comments 0 comments

WARSAW, Jan 13 (AFP) - Visiting French Foreign Minister Michel Barnier said Thursday he saw reasons for closer ties between his country and Poland as he inaugurated the renovated French embassy here.

WARSAW, Jan 13 (AFP) - Visiting French Foreign Minister Michel Barnier said Thursday he saw reasons for closer ties between his country and Poland as he inaugurated the renovated French embassy here.

"We have reasons today, Poles and French people, to better work together", said Barnier, who arrived here late Wednesday for a 24-hour working visit.

He spoke of a "new beginning" in the bilateral relationship, which had been strained over Warsaw's support for the US-led war in Iraq as well as over disagreements over a reference to Christian values in the European constitution.

He denied suggestions that Paris-Warsaw ties were adversely influenced by Poland's staunchly pro-US stance within the European Union.

"I don't think so. The central pillar of our bilateral relations is now our membership of the EU," Barnier said.

He also recalled that while Paris opposes the Iraq war, it was the United States' oldest ally and maintained "very intense" bilateral ties with Washington.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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