The German government is to support France in the goal of making the European Union “more sovereign”, according to the country’s new foreign minister.
Annalena Baerbock, the foreign minister of Germany’s new left-led coalition government, has pledged that her country will support France in making “a more sovereign Europe” — that is, one with more power over its member-states’ national governments.
The declaration comes as France assumes the European Union’s rotating presidency for the next six months.
“Our French friends can count on our support from the first to the last day to lay the right foundations within the EU: for a sustainable economic recovery, in the fight against the climate crisis, in digitization and for a more sovereign Europe in the world,” Baerbock said, according to AFP.
The German minister went on to say that the French presidency is an important opportunity to “strengthen Europe and make it fit for the challenges of tomorrow” and that Germany and France as “the closest friends at the heart of Europe, bear a particular responsibility for a united European Union, capable of acting and oriented towards the future”.
France’s President Emmanuel Macron has already promised that the nation will aim to increase the power of Europe on the world stage during its presidency of the bloc, which kicks off on January 1st.
“We want to get … a powerful Europe in the world, fully sovereign, free to make its choices and master of its own destiny,” Macron said according to an Associated Press report.
Macron also warned against the dangers of “manipulation from some states” and and “attempts at destabilization, tensions including in our closer neighbourhood”.
As France begins its presidency of the EU, Germany will begin its presidency of the G7 on the same date, with Berlin to host a summit of the seven nations in June.
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Germany’s declaration of support for a “more sovereign” European Union is in keeping with the modus operandi of the incoming government.
The coalition — led by Chancellor Olaf Scholz — has declared that it will push for a so-called “United States of Europe” during its lifespan.
In the document outlining the government’s goals, the three coalition members commit to “lead developments to a European federal state”, with the document noting the move is Germany’s “special responsibility” as the EU’s “largest member-state”.
Baerbock has backed the document, saying that “a strong German foreign policy can only be a European one”.
The French government has also repeatedly backed the call for stronger European ties, with one government source even saying that Macron was willing to surrender its seat on the UN Security Council to the bloc in exchange for the establishment of an European Army.
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