Arab nations across North Africa and the Middle East have raised doubts over the new Mediterranean Union, to be launched next month by France. Their concerns focus particularly on the inclusion of Israel, and the future of Turkey.
President Nicolas Sarkozy’s pet project was the main item on the agenda at the start of the 15th Mediterranean Forum in Algiers.
The Lebanese Druze leader Walid Jumblatt spoke to Euronews, and said he believed the new union had a hidden objective — to keep Turkey out of Europe: “I believe that the Mediterranean Union is, sadly, a way for France to isolate Turkey.”
France says it is aimed at strengthening ties between the European Union and countries bordering the Mediterranean.