Friday, March 09, 2007

Feel free to copy, there is no copyright on an Anoneumouse montage. (click on image to enlarge)

Berlin Declaration

European Union leaders meeting yesterday faced a daunting challenge: Making sure a statement marking the European Unions 50th birthday on March 25 is simple, jargon-free and uplifting.

Luxembourg's Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, chairman of the group of countries with the common euro currency, wants the euro to be mentioned. Not surprisingly, non eurozone-countries such as the UK and Sweden dislike the idea.

Nine EU members, including France, Spain and Italy, are pushing for a stronger emphasis on what they call "social Europe," with a focus on workers' rights. But free-marketeers in the UK and the Czech Republic cold-shoulder any such plans.

Meanwhile, Poland is lobbying for a reference to Europe's Christian roots, something that secular France refuses to accept.

There is also disagreement on whether the statement should mention EU enlargement as a success story given the European Unions current "enlargement blues" and weariness about further expansion.

Amidst the discord, EU states do agree that the Berlin Declaration should be easy to read.

Is that easy enough for you


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