Sunday, June 21, 2015

Merkel insists on limits to Britain's EU reform

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Saturday that the principles of free movement and non-discrimination cannot be questioned when it comes to possible reforms of the European Union (EU).

She made the remarks days before planned visits to Berlin by British Queen Elizabeth II and Prime Minister David Cameron in the coming week.

"The relations between Germany and Britain are very friendly today ... We see each other as partner in the European Union ... and we have a lot in common in politics," said Merkel in her weekly video podcast.

The chancellor reiterated that she would like Britain to remain part of the EU.

Speaking about possible EU reforms, Merkel noted there were "some points in common" between Germany and Britain, for example when it comes to reduction of bureaucracy and the question of social abuse, but the two countries "have quite different opinions" on some other issues, including the principle of "Ever Closer Union".

The chancellor showed an open-minded attitude to Britain's reform ideas, but insisted on limits to them, saying the principles of free movement and non-discrimination cannot be questioned.

"I am convinced that we can find solutions for Britain's requests within this framework," Merkel added.

  Xinhua -

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