German Chancellor Angela Merkel told MEPs in Strasbourg that “it is precisely now that we need more Europe”, in a renewed effort to bolster support for consensus on the European migrant crisis.
In the first joint address to the European parliament since 1989, when French President François Mitterand stood alongside German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, President François Hollande similarly said: "We need not less Europe, but more Europe, otherwise we will see the end of Europe.” Hollande added:
We must go further, otherwise we will not stop, but we will go backwards. It would spell end European project. There will be choices. Either we go forward or backwards,
This comes after European Commission President Jean Claude-Juncker said there was “a lack of Europe in the European Union”.
The statements will be a blow to Prime Minister David Cameron who is currently trying to renegotiate the UK’s membership terms with the EU, including an opt-out of an ever closer union.
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In the speech, Merkel also said the Dublin regulation, whereby the member state where an asylum seeker lands is usually responsible for that asylum seeker, is now “obsolete”.