Euro Realist

EUOBSERVER STAFF

02.06.2009 @ 14:29 CET

EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS

[excerpt]

The Conservative leader on Saturday attended a congress in Warsaw together with Poland’s right-wing Law and Justice party and the Czech centre-right ODS faction.

The three parties plan in June to unveil a new EU political group together with at least four smaller parties from other EU states. With the Conservatives and ODS riding high in the polls and with Law and Justice creeping up, the three parties alone can count on fielding 50 MEPs.

Speaking in Warsaw, Mr Cameron said the new group will be “a strong centre-right group, which will give an alternative to federalist points of view.” ODS leader Mirek Topolanek called for a “flexible, open Europe” based on strong nation states. “The Lisbon treaty is dead,” he said.

Some senior Conservative politicians have attacked Mr Cameron for abandoning French and German centre-right parties in the EU parliament EPP-ED group in favour of the new Polish and Czech allies.

“I do not understand a rigid commitment to impotence,” Lord Kerr of Kinlochard, a UK ambassador to the EU in the 1990s, said in The Guardian.

The Polish and Czech parties could prove tricky bedfellows for the mainstream Tory party. On Sunday, Mr Kaczynski said “a strong Europe must be a Christian Europe” and continued bashing Germany, this time for securing more EU aid for its farmers than Poland gets.

Mr Topolanek has meanwhile been implicated in an Italian sex scandal. Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi has banned the publication of pictures allegedly showing topless girls and VIP guests at his mansion in Sardinia. Mr Berlusconi’s lawyer told Corriere della Sera that one picture shows Mr Topolanek naked in the garden during a family visit in May 2008.

© 2009 EUobserver.com. All rights reserved. Printed on 03.06.2009.

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