Thursday 23 November 2017

French and German leaders urge Europeans to stand up to nationalism

French president Emmanuel Macron welcomes German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the Elysee Palace in Paris (AP)
French president Emmanuel Macron welcomes German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the Elysee Palace in Paris (AP)

The presidents of France and Germany have said Europeans must stand up to nationalism and build a "common future", as they prepare to mark 99 years since the end of the First World War.

French president Emmanuel Macron said it is "necessary and urgent" to reinforce the European Union over the coming year to stop "scepticism and rejection" from spreading.

At his side in Paris, German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier acknowledged fears of Europeans "who don't feel protected from the consequences of globalisation".

But he also insisted that Europe must move forward "so that events like those we knew over the past century ... don't repeat themselves".

Both leaders will inaugurate a museum on a rocky peak overlooking the Rhine Valley, where about 25,000 French and German soldiers were killed during the First World War.

Press Association

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