German minister embarks on Eastern European tour

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German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle will visit Poland, Bulgaria, Romania and Moldova this week for political talks, his spokesman said on Wednesday.

He will travel first to Poland to participate in a forum alongside his counterpart Radoslaw Sikorski on Thursday, before heading to Bulgaria for talks with Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov and Prime Minister Boyko Borisov.

He will also go to Romania to meet President Traian Basescu and Foreign Minister Theodor Baconschi, Westerwelle's spokesman Andreas Peschke told a regular briefing.

Following a visit to German minorities in Romania, the minister will also make a brief trip to Moldova to meet his counterpart Iurie Leanca.

Discussions would focus on European policy and cooperation in the Black Sea, Peschke said.

News of his visit came as Westerwelle's representative for Polish affairs, Cornelia Pieper, found herself in hot water for appearing to urge Polish voters not to vote for Jaroslaw Kaczynski in July 4's presidential run-off.

© 2010 AFP

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