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An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

Latest update : 2009-11-12

Germany holds back on top roles in EU

The International Herald Tribune says Germany’s reticence in naming candidates for the EU’s top jobs is puzzling diplomats in Brussels.

Amid squabbling amongst EU member states over who will become the bloc’s first president and foreign minister, the one country that has puzzled diplomats is Germany, says the International Herald Tribune. “It holds the key for the selection of the two jobs, is crucial in influencing the direction of Europe… yet Angela Merkel has not put forward a German for either job.”

What’s more Merkel didn’t come come up with a German proposal to replace Jaap de Hoop Scheffer as NATO secretary general.

What makes Germany’s unwillingness to go for the top jobs in these two organizations so surprising is that it could have them for the asking. A veteran EU diplomat said– “If Merkel was serious about naming someone, that person would get the top job, no question about it.”

Germany is also absent from top jobs in the WTO, the IMF, the International Atomic Energy Agency, the OECD and holds only one senior job at the UN.

Some speculate that Berlin doesn’t want the leadership roles – perhaps the Germans see themselves as moderators, not leaders. Others are critical of Germany for being too inward looking.

Other stories covered in today’s international papers:

The Irish Times
Majority vote could be used to decide on EU jobs

Der Tagesspiegel
A grand gesture - the first chancellor to attend Paris’s celebrations for the end of WW1

Wall Street Journal
Why Fort Hood Really Happened

The Daily Mail
Innocent teenagers DNA to be on database for six years.
 

By James CREEDON

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