Sarkozy to meet Merkel on Monday, propose debt crisis plan

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President Nicolas Sarkozy of France said Thursday that he would meet Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel next week and announce a joint plan to rescue Europe from its debt crisis.

"On Monday, I will host Angela Merkel and together we will make proposals to guarantee the future of Europe," Sarkozy said in a major economic address, arguing that: "Europe must be refounded."

"France and Germany, after so many tragedies, decided to unite their destiny, to look to the future together. Changing this strategy would be inexcusable," Sarkozy said.

"History and geography have made Germany and France either rivals or partners."

"Germany and France united means that all of Europe is united and strong. France and Germany divided is all of Europe divided and weakened."

For the French and for Germans, "each has its own history, each its own wounds. When we talk about the currency, Germany remembers its history. We must understand that and we must respect it," he said.

Germany has rejected calls for European Central Bank intervention to bail out indebted European economies because of its own painful memories of hyperinflation after World War I.

© 2011 AFP

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