EU leaders set to meet just after EU election

Parliament, which will convene on July 2 after being elected on May 23-26, is pushing the European Council of national leaders to nominate Juncker’s successor. (Shutterstock)
Updated 03 May 2019
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EU leaders set to meet just after EU election

  • The meeting, similar to one held after the previous vote in 2014, would give leaders a chance to discuss their preferences for who will succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as president of the European Commission
  • Council President Donald Tusk is likely to announce plans for the special summit during a gathering of leaders in Sibiu, Romania next Thursday

BRUSSELS: National leaders of the European Union are likely to meet for a summit in Brussels on May 28, two days after a European Parliament election, to discuss who should run the EU executive for the next five years, officials said on Friday.
The meeting, similar to one held after the previous vote in 2014, would give leaders a chance to discuss their preferences for who will succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as president of the European Commission, three senior EU officials told Reuters.
Parliament, which will convene on July 2 after being elected on May 23-26, is pushing the European Council of national leaders to nominate Juncker’s successor from among the lead candidates of winning parties. But many national leaders are reluctant to accept this so-called Spitzenkandidat process.
Council President Donald Tusk is likely to announce plans for the special summit during a gathering of leaders in Sibiu, Romania next Thursday. They are due formally to nominate a Commission chief at a Brussels summit on June 20-21. The nominee would then require endorsement by the European Parliament.


Mexico anxiously awaits US response on immigration deal as deadline arrives

Updated 2 min 30 sec ago
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Mexico anxiously awaits US response on immigration deal as deadline arrives

  • Earlier agreements between the countries set the possibility that asylum seeker would apply in Mexico and not US
  • Mexico averted on Sunday talks about a “safe third country”
MEXICO CITY: Mexico is on tenterhooks as a Monday deadline on a US migration deal that removed tariff threats on Mexican exports arrived, and despite progress made in reducing migrant flows it was unclear what President Donald Trump’s next move would be.
The agreement reached in June laid out that if the United States deems that Mexico has not done enough to thwart migrants by the July 22 deadline, the two countries would begin talks over changing rules to make most asylum seekers apply for refuge in Mexico, not the United States.
Mexico said on Sunday it had averted the so-called “safe third country” negotiations with the United States that it desperately wants to avoid after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo praised Mexican efforts in reducing US-bound migrant flows.
But while Pompeo praised the progress made by Mexico in helping cut apprehensions on the US southern border by almost a third in June to some 100,000, he also said there was still “more work to do” and that he would consult with Trump, who has been uncharacteristically hush on the topic.
“As for the next set of actions. I’ll talk with the president and the teams back in Washington and we’ll decide exactly which tools and exactly how to proceed,” said Pompeo.
Mexico’s foreign minister Marcelo Ebrard, who met with Pompeo in Mexico City on Sunday, was scheduled to attend Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s daily presser Monday morning.
Following the meeting with Pompeo, Ebrard said considering the advances Mexico had made, it was not necessary to initiate negotiations on a safe third country agreement between Mexico and the United States.
Eager to avoid being cornered into those talks, Mexico has deployed some 21,000 militarized National Guard police to decrease the flow of people across the U.S-Mexico border.
Mexico has long resisted US pressure to formally accept the safe third country status.