European leaders meeting in Brussels have failed to agree on who should fill two of the bloc’s top jobs, that of European Council president and foreign policy chief.
Herman Van Rompuy and Catherine Ashton are due to step down in November.
Two top woman politicians from Italy ( Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini) and Denmark ( Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt) appear to be in the running, but leaders from eastern and central Europe are insisting on someone from their region for the foreign policy role.
The summit broke up after making the decision to meet again on August 30, hoping then to reach a deal or failing that to come up with a compromise candidate.
Our correspondent in Brussels Audrey Tilve said:
“The only agreement confirmed here is that the position of head of European diplomacy will be a centre-left candidate. The 28 have now six weeks to think about it and they need to get it right.”