Donald Tusk row leaves Poland isolated in EU

Mar 10, 2017, 00:27
Donald Tusk row leaves Poland isolated in EU

She said this rendered the summit invalid, but European Union officials said Polish refusal to endorse the text would have no legal impact.

Tusk, Poland's former prime minister and a bitter foe of the country's most powerful politician, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, has a term that expires in May.

German Deputy Foreign Minister Michael Roth said he knows of reservations over Tusk only in Poland and Hungary.

The president of the European Council will now serve for another 30 months.

"I don't see how one country could oppose this solution when all the others are in favour", said French President Francois Hollande, echoing comment from numerous bloc's 28 leaders.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, left, speaks with European Council President Donald Tusk as they wait for the start of a pre-EU summit Tripartite meeting at the Europa building in Brussels on Wednesday, March 8, 2017.

Ms Szydlo has accused her predecessor of interfering in domestic politics through his support for Poland's centrist opposition party.

The nationalist government led by Beata Szydlo proposed Polish Member of the European Parliament Jacek Saryusz-Wolski as a replacement for Tusk, and said nothing should be decided without the country's stamp of approval. But the other 27 leaders wasted no time in moving to a cold-blooded vote in which she was the lone objector.

"Migration, Brexit and today show that things are not going in the right direction, and we cherish the European Union too much to let it fall apart", she said, adding that her Europe was a "united Europe, respectful of its members, dealing with matters important to European Union citizens".

And so, at least at the European Council, support for European federalism and liberalism won the day.

"We knew this would happen", Prime Minister Joseph Muscat told reporters.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel offered Tusk public support in a pre-summit speech to lawmakers in Berlin.

Mr Tusk was reappointed despite a Polish plot to oust him from the role.

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