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Candidates seeking to succeed Juncker as EC President outline EU vision

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By Philip Pangalos
Candidates seeking to succeed Juncker as EC President outline EU vision

The four candidates seeking to succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as European Commission President spoke about their vision for the European Union.

In a debate that took place in Florence, the candidates discussed a series of core issues, including migration, climate change, security and socioeconomic policies.

Manfred Weber, the European People's Party candidate, said: "It's a common challenge to guarantee security. That's why I'm in favour of a strongly upgraded FBI for the European Union, with its own rights to make investigations inside the European Union."

Guy Verhofstadt, the Alliance of Liberals candidate, said: "We should invite the members of the European Council here to tell us why they are not capable to reform the asylum system in Europe, because there is the real crisis."

Frans Timmermans, the European Socialists candidate, said: "It is unbearable that big companies are making billions (of euros) of profits in Europe and paying no taxes. We need to change that immediately. We need to make sure that the incomes of the middle classes go up and they go up quickly."

Ska Keller, the European Greens candidate, said: "They go to the streets in thousands and thousands in Rome, all over Italy, all over Europe, all over the world, because they're saying they also want to have a planet to live in."

"After the next European elections, we might see a very fragmented European Parliament and a rise of Eurosceptic parties, and a traditional alliance might not be sufficient to find a majority. And the choice of the next President of the European Commission might need compromises with new political forces," Euronews' correspondent said.