Tuesday, 24 March 2020

MEP: V4 not ground to push through joint stands on EU issues

ČTK |
20 September 2016

Prague, Sept 19 (CTK) - The Visegrad Four (V4) is a grouping which can play a role in dealing with regional and bilateral issues, but it is not a suitable platform to push through joint stands on EU issues, Czech MEP Pavel Telicka (unaffiliated, for ANO) has told CTK.

The V4 is comprised of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

Telicka said the Czech Republic should not only seek agreements within the grouping, but it should seek other partners, too.

He said the Czech Republic should try to push through its interests with other neighbours, "mainly with Germany," but also with other partners, such as the Netherlands and the Nordic countries, "where allies can be easily found, which we can see in the European Parliament every day."

In addition, such countries can have a greater weigh in the EU thanks to their history, personalities and political ties.

It is also important whether the partners really keep agreements, Telicka said.

He said it usually happens that any agreement, if reached, survives maximally the first collision, which is due to that the V4 countries´ interests and ways of negotiating markedly differ.

Telicka said the Czech Republic's V4 partners are problematic seen from the European point of view.

He gave as an example Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico's statement on Sunday that the EU will see to it that Britain do worse after it leaves the EU than when it was its member.

"Visegrad has no value for a country like the Czech Republic, we must seek allies in pushing through our national interests elsewhere than in the V4 partners who are not much predictable," Telicka said.

He asid the V4's focus mainly rests in things that do not concern the Union, "such as cross-border cooperation, infrastructure, cultural exchange, sport, partial infrastructure and other projects."

Telicka said he considers the creation of a sort of union within the EU based on the V4, about which President Milos Zeman spoke with Austrian presidential candidate Norbert Hofer last week, to be "an immense misunderstanding" of how one's own interests should be pushed through.

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