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News France proposes first meeting on the creation of the Mediterranean Union to be held in Marseille in June 2008

The French project would include all EU members rather than the 5+5 option sometimes mentioned. The Union will be "child of the Barcelona Process", as opposed to a controversial separate initiative. The proposal was made by the French delegation at the meeting of the foreign ministers of the 37 EU and Mediterranean states currently underway in Lisbon, Italian Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Vittorio Craxi said. The idea of a Mediterranean Union was presented a few weeks ago by French President Nicolas Sarkozy. The French delegation in Lisbon, led by Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, revealed the first information on the content that Paris would like to give to the project. France proposes the Mediterranean Union to be inclusive rather than exclusive with all EU member states being members, Craxi said. The delegation underlined that the union will be "child of the Barcelona Process", which launched the Euro-Mediterranean cooperation. The project envisages an 'annual event' at the level of heads of state or government, modelled after G8, with a 'very specific agenda' based on two pillars, economic cooperation on the one hand, and security and political cooperation on the other. The themes to be discussed will include, Craxi said, migration management and energy, also on the basis of the initiative for a Mediterranean cooperation in the energy field, launched by Italian Minister Pierluigi Bersani at the beginning of the year.

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News type Inbrief
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Source of information Ansamed
Geographical coverage France, Algeria, Palestine, Cyprus, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Malta, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey
News date 30/11/2007
Working language(s) ENGLISH