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French and US presidents united on Europe


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French and US presidents united on Europe

The leaders the world’s largest economies, including the new French president, are meeting in the United States this weekend for the G8 conference.

François Hollande met US president Barack Obama at the White House ahead of the talks. Obama supports the idea of stimulating growth in Europe, and both men want to see the eurozone remain intact.

“We share the belief that Greece must remain inside the eurozone, and that everyone must make an effort to achieve that,” said Hollande. “The Greeks will be consulted again in June elections and I want to send this message to the Greek people.”

But with German Chancellor Angela Merkel insisting that the focus on austerity has to continue, the way ahead could prove difficult.

Officials say the US hopes to encourage a comprehensive approach to solving Europe’s problems.

Our correspondent in Maryland says: “Obama knows that his re-election chances greatly depend on economic recovery. That’s why he needs the Europeans to prevent a spillover of the debt crisis to the United States and the rest of the world. He believes François Hollande to be an ally in this effort. At the same time, Obama must make sure not to drive a wedge between France and Germany.”

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