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The paper clip

11.02.2013 / 12:40 CET
A round-up of the international press on Monday, 11 February.

The Polish and Slovak leaders were very happy with the outcome of last week's summit on the EU's long-term budget, Slovakia's Pravda writes. Romania's President Traian Băsescu also says that his country came out well from the budget talks, Jurnalul National writes. Poland's Gazeta Wyborcza writes that Poland is an EU “guinea pig” – it was, at first, a source of concern and is now seen as an example of how to use EU funds well.

The Italian papers report on election campaign ahead of a vote on 24-25 February. The serving prime minister, Mario Monti, has accused his predecessor, Silvio Berlusconi, as trying to buy support, Corriere della Sera writes. La Repubblica also notes that Berlusconi is once again deploying heavy sexual innuendo on the campaign trail.

The scandal in the UK about horsemeat found in pre-prepared beef meals has spread across the continent, particularly along an ownership and production chain that runs from France and Sweden to Luxembourg and Romania. Libération has a report on the response in France. Romania's Ziarul Gandul gives extensive coverage to the case, which may lead back to an abattoir in Romania.

A corruption case involving an MEP, Gigi Becali, is coming to a head in Romania. Jurnalul National has a report.

Poland's Gazeta Wyborcza writes children living in Poland of Polish parents working in the UK are receiving money from the British budget.

Bit by bit the arguments and terrain for the 2014 referendum vote are taking sharper shape, the Guardian writes in an editorial on Scotland's bid for independence.

Hungary's Népszabadság visits Afghanistan to see how Hungarian troops are preparing for their departure from the country.

In the Financial Times, Lawrence Summers, the economist, urges his former boss – US President Barack Obama – to adopt a broader, growth-centred agenda is needed to propel the economy and not to focus just on the deficit.

Ahead of Obama's State of the Union speech, the Guardian writes that Obama may be pushing gun control at home, but abroad he is a killer, because of his backing for drone strikes.

Slovakia's Pravda looks at new documents that suggest that the father-in-law of outgoing Czech President Václav Klaus was a member of the Slovak secret services during the Second World War and was involved in stripping Jews of their assets. The secret services were also involved in the deportation of Jews, many of whom did not survive. Lidové noviny reports that, in an interview with a Polish paper, Klaus has described the era of his predecessor, Václav Havel, as an period of Jacobinism and extreme left-wing politics.

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reports that, with eurozone finance ministers meeting in Brussels today, the European Central Bank is urging them to agree financial aid for Cyprus. Jörg Asmussen, the German member of the ECB’s executive board, is pressing for rapid action. He says that ministers should not – as they have insisted – wait for Cyprus to hold its elections next month.


Handelsblatt reports Asmussen as saying that Cyprus will become insolvent if ministers wait until the end of March. “We risk the progress we have made over the past year in addressing the euro crisis,” Asmussen is quoted as saying.


Eurozone finance ministers meet in Brussels later today to discuss aid to Greece and Cyprus, writes Kathimerini. The markets are unsettled ahead of a tight election in Italy later this month, and a corruption scandal that has embroiled Spain's ruling party and its prime minister has added to the uncertainty, the paper writes.

Hungary's parliament is about to start debating new constitutional provisions limiting the power of the constitutional court, writes Die Presse.

Serbia's Blic looks at who might be behind the hostile leaks against Prime Minister Ivica Dacic‡.

The special envoys of the European Parliament for Ukraine, former President Aleksander Kwasniewski of Poland and former president of the European Parliament Pat Cox, have accused the Ukrainian authorities of distorting their observations after a visit to imprisoned opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, writes the Kyiv Post.

The New York Times reports that fighting has come to previously untouched areas of Damascus, the Syrian capital.

© 2014 European Voice. All rights reserved.

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Traian Basescu(EC)

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