France, Germany Want New European Treaty To Protect Euro


(RFE/RL) — French President Nicolas Sarkozy has said that France and Germany are going to push for European treaty changes to protect the common currency, the euro.

Sarkozy, in a major policy speech in the French city of Toulon, said he and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will hold talks in Paris on December 5 on what he called common proposals aimed at curbing the eurozone debt crisis.

Sarkozy said France and Germany want a new EU treaty to “overhaul and rethink the organization of Europe.” But he provided few details about what the changes would entail.

Sarkozy said panic of a deepening financial criss presents a major danger for Europeans.

“The fear is back. This fear that destroys the confidence, this fear that paralyses the consumer, that hinders the investor from investing, the entrepreneur from being entrepreneurial, the boss from hiring, the banks from lending. This fear has a name: it is the fear that France has of ceasing to master its own destiny,” Sarkozy said.

The French president also called for a rethink of the Schengen agreement that allows for the free movement of people within certain European countries.

He said that a European zone that allows free internal movement but fails to protect its external borders “cannot last.”

Merkel is due to present her vision of the changes in a speech to the Bundestag lower house of parliament on December 2.


RFE/RL journalists report the news in 21 countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established.

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