Tuesday

17th Oct 2017

France's Hamon meets Merkel, secures Schulz backing

  • Benoit Hamon described his meeting with Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel as amiable, but not without differences.

Benoit Hamon, the Socialist contender in France's presidential race, criticised Germany's handling of the eurozone crisis during a visit to Berlin on Tuesday (28 March).

Hamon spoke to reporters after a meeting with German chancellor Angela Merkel. He described the meeting as amiable, but not without differences.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

"I repeated to her my disagreement with austerity policies, the consequences that they have had on people, the fact that they have produced today social desperation that produces votes for the far right," he said.

He said that Merkel disagreed with his analysis, but that she had not closed the door on his proposal for a reform of eurozone governance.

The proposal suggests to replace the Eurogroup - an informal gathering of eurozone finance ministers that is not enshrined in the EU treaties - with an assembly of politicians from national and the European parliaments.

Hamon said they had agreed on the Minsk ceasefire deal, which aims to stop Russian-controlled forces from waging war in eastern Ukraine, and the need to strengthen EU defence.

Merkel did not comment on the meeting. The German chancellor has previously met with centre-right and centrist presidential-hopefuls Francois Fillon and Emmanuel Macron, and said she would meet all candidates except for the far-right's Marine Le Pen.

According to the latests poll published on Tuesday, Macron and Le Pen are neck-and-neck in the race for the first round on 23 April, with 25.5 percent and 25 percent of the voting intentions each.

Fillon, whose wife was put under formal investigation on Tuesday in a "fake jobs" inquiry, was credited with 17.5 percent of voting intentions. Radical leftist Jean-Luc Melenchon had 14 percent and scored better than Hamon, who trailed with 10.5 percent of the poll.

The socialist candidate, who was elected in a primary vote, is struggling to secure even the support of his own party. Many socialist heavyweights have bet on Macron instead.

Former prime minister Manuel Valls became the latest socialist to break party ranks and announced on Wednesday morning that he would vote for Macron, adding that it was a "question of reason".

Hamon was endorsed by Martin Schulz, the German social democratic party (SPD) candidate for chancellor, on Tuesday.

The former president of the European Parliament said he had "long wished Benoit Hamon success in the presidential race in France" and that he had the support of socialist parties across Europe.

Earlier this month, while handing the SPD leadership over to Schulz, vice-chancellor Sigmar Gabriel had suggested that the party supported Macron instead of Hamon.

"Imagine that Emmanuel Macron becomes president in France, and Martin [Schulz] chancellor. [Imagine] all the things we'll be able to change," he said.

Varoufakis back in push for ECB transparency

The former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis and German left-wing MEP Fabio De Masi want to know whether the European Central Bank overstepped its powers when putting capital controls on Greek banks in 2015.

Macron meets Merkel, says France must reform

The independent liberal candidate to the presidential election said in Berlin that France must reform itself if it wants to remain close to Germany and play a role in Europe.

French candidates clash on EU visions

The eleven candidates in the French presidential elections aired competing EU visions in a TV debate, with the far-right Le Pen coming under fire.

Czech election stalemate on joining euro

Whilst committed to joining the euro in theory, most Czech parties seem to be stonewalling on 'when' in the run-up to the 20-21 October election - and Andrej Babis, favourite to be prime minister, has ruled it out.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  2. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  3. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  4. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  5. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe
  6. CECEE-Privacy Regulation – Hands off M2M Communication!
  7. ILGA-EuropeHealth4LGBTI: Reducing Health Inequalities Experienced by LGBTI People
  8. EU2017EEEHealth: A Tool for More Equal Health
  9. Mission of China to the EUChina-EU Tourism a Key Driver for Job Creation and Enhanced Competitiveness
  10. CECENon-Harmonised Homologation of Mobile Machinery Costs € 90 Million per Year
  11. ILGA-EuropeMass Detention of Azeri LGBTI People - the LGBTI Community Urgently Needs Your Support
  12. European Free AllianceCatalans Have Won the Right to Have an Independent State

Latest News

  1. Malta shocked after car bomb kills crusading journalist
  2. Spanish and Catalan leaders continue stand-off
  3. May pleads for more as EU makes Brexit gesture
  4. EU united in backing Iran deal, after Trump criticisms
  5. 'Think of the patients!' cry warring EMA-host cities
  6. In Iceland: Europe woos Arctic allies
  7. Austrian voters reject liberal pro-EU status quo
  8. Turkey urges EU not to break off ties