French President Emmanuel Macron criticized the European Council for failing to nominate a new team to take up the top jobs at the head of the European Union, after an hours long meeting in Brussels on Monday. Macron said he was opposed to further EU expansion until the bloc had undergone profound reforms.
«We have finished the day on what we can agree to call a failure, since no solution was... Еще found, and I think we're giving a very bad image of the Council and of Europe,» he said. «Our credibility is deeply damaged because of these too-long meetings which are achieving nothing. We give an image of Europe that is not serious.»
Macron added, «I am firm on the fact that I will refuse any kind of enlargement before a deep reform of our institutional functioning, in the spirit of seriousness.»
The European Council, the body that defines the EU's overall goals, comprising the bloc's 28 member states' leaders, was meeting to nominate the head of the European Commission, of the European Council and the High Representative for Foreign Affairs, as well as the head of the European Central Bank, though this nomination is not expected until later.
«What is missing around the table is the feeling and the duty to defend the European common interest,» Macron added. «We all defend our countries but we must stand up and defend the common European interest. When there are too many hidden agendas we cannot succeed.»
The French leader fell short of naming the politicians, who, in his mind, had led the talks to stall, though he said some had «personal ambitions» and that the overall dynamic of the meeting was not conducive to reaching an agreement.
Macron also brought up several high profile names including Frans Timmermans, Margrethe Vestager and Michel Barnier, saying they wouldn't «pull new names out of a hat,» though he insisted on his commitment to gender parity and «geographic balance» among the nominees.