A primary “European Political Neighborhood” assembly will happen within the Czech Republic earlier than the tip of the 12 months, French President Emmanuel Macron stated Friday.
The thought — Macron’s brainchild — is to supply a platform for political dialogue and cooperation, and is ready to incorporate nations aspiring to hitch the EU.
It has been met with a mixture of curiosity and scepticism.
“We’ll invite (nations) from Iceland to Ukraine”, Macron informed a press convention following a summit in Brussels that recognised Ukraine and Moldova as EU candidates.
Discussions confirmed “very broad consensus” for the group, which will probably be “based mostly on geography and values”, Macron stated.
European Council President Charles Michel stated the “attainable assembly” can be held in Prague, with the listing of nations concerned drawn up later.
It might happen in October, European sources stated.
Macron urged the European Political Neighborhood proposal to the European Parliament on Might 9, because the chamber debated Ukraine’s ambition to grow to be a candidate to sooner or later be part of the EU.
He mooted it as a broad however “lean” decision-making construction for political dialogue and cooperation on issues of widespread curiosity for European nations — each these within the EU and outdoors it.
It could embody nations wanting to hitch the EU, akin to Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia and Western Balkans states. But additionally these joyful to be exterior it, akin to Switzerland and Norway, and maybe even former member Britain.
There’s a query mark over Turkey, a longtime EU aspirant that sits alongside many European nations in NATO, which has expressed curiosity within the thought.
Diplomatic sources stated a choice had not been reached on Turkey’s participation.
Macron has insisted the discussion board would solely be for nations that share the EU’s “democratic values”.