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Re: [Eurasia] [OS] G3 - FRANCE/SWEDEN/TURKEY/EU - Sarkozy cancels Sweden visit over Turkey

Released on 2012-02-29 08:00 GMT

Email-ID 1710497
Date 1970-01-01 01:00:00
This is definitely about attention grabbing... Sarko is so predictable.
This is awesome!!

----- Original Message -----
From: "Eugene Chausovsky"
To: "EurAsia AOR"
Sent: Friday, May 29, 2009 8:50:33 AM GMT -05:00 Colombia
Subject: Re: [Eurasia] [OS] G3 - FRANCE/SWEDEN/TURKEY/EU - Sarkozy cancels
Sweden visit over Turkey

Looks like Sarko is already trying to grab the limelight again before
Sweden takes over...any significant implications of a Sweden-France clash
over Turkey for the rest of the EU, energy deals, etc?

Chris Farnham wrote:

Sarkozy cancels Sweden visit over Turkey

Today @ 09:12 CET

French President Nicolas Sarkozy has cancelled a visit to Sweden
scheduled for next Tuesday (2 June) in order to avoid a clash on the
question of Turkey's EU membership just days before the European
elections and a month before Stockholm takes over the EU's rotating

Officially, Mr Sarkozy's office said the trip was cancelled "for agenda

"We should avoid halting EU enlargement," said Swedish foreign minister
Carl Bildt

But the French president, who is an outspoken opponent of Turkey's entry
to the European Union, did not want to highlight the strong divergence
of views on this topic with Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, Le
Monde reported on Thursday (28 May).

Sweden favours further EU enlargement, including to Turkey. On Monday
this week, Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt told Le Figaro newspaper
that the EU had "a strategic interest" in Turkey's EU integration and
warned against "closing the door" to Ankara.

"If we judge Cyprus to be in Europe, although it is as in island along
Syria's shores, it is hard not to consider that Turkey is in Europe," Mr
Bildt said, referring to Mr Sarkozy's repeated statements that Turkey is
not a European country and does not belong to Europe.

Additionally, Mr Sarkozy probably did not appreciate that Mr Bildt
expressed views different from his on the economy, French newspapers

In the Figaro interview, Mr Bildt said: "My vision of Europe is not as
defensive as I observe it with other people."

In a reference to aid plans for the car industry - very much promoted by
Mr Sarkozy - the Swedish top diplomat said that for him, "spending
taxpayers' money to subsidise existing structures is a very good way of
wasting money."

The French president's trip to Sweden was cancelled the day after the
interview was published.

"Nicolas Sarkozy cancelled his visit because of the Carl Bildt
interview," one minister told Le Monde.
"The president wanted to avoid a clash on Turkey and did not want that
his visit to Sweden interferes with the elections [five days later].
There are [also] too many dossiers that are too important to prepare
with the Swedish EU presidency to spoil that visit," another official
told the paper.
The upcoming Swedish EU presidency is the real reason behind the
cancellation, rather than the context of the European elections,
according to Le Figaro journalist Pierre Rousseiln.

"Nicolas Sarkozy does not fear confrontation," he wrote in his blog,
adding that defending his position in Sweden could even have been
beneficial for Mr Sarkozy ahead of next Sunday's vote.

If he refused to go to Stockholm, he did it to avoid a clash just a
month before the Swedish EU presidency starts and it is a sign that Mr
Sarkozy is expecting a number of difficulties during Sweden's six-month
term at the head of the bloc, Mr Rousselin wrote.

The French president's office is currently working on rescheduling the
visit for another date before the end of June.


Chris Farnham
Beijing Correspondent , STRATFOR
China Mobile: (86) 1581 1579142

Eugene Chausovsky
C: 512-914-7896