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EPP leaders to discuss EU reform at meeting in Prague

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Prague, Dec 4 (CTK) – Three EU commissioners will attend a discussion meeting of the broad leadership of the European People´s Party (EPP), which is the strongest in the European Parliament, that will be held in Prague next week, Marek Hannibal, from the EPP press department, has told CTK.
The EPP, which has 216 seats in the 751-seat EP, includes seven Czech MEPs elected for the TOP 09/STAN party and the Christian Democratic Union (KDU-CSL).
The Prague meeting will be attended by Kristalina Georgieva, EC vice-president responsible for the budget, and commissioners Tibor Navracsics and Christos Stylianides.
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has also promised to come as has former European central bank president Jean-Claude Trichet.
The two-day meeting will be partly attended by Czech Deputy Prime Minister and KDU-CSL chairman Pavel Belobradek, and the new chairman of the opposition TOP 09, Miroslav Kalousek, a former finance minister, Hannibal said.
The participants will discuss the demands for an EU reform, presented by British Prime Minister David Cameron in November.
London wants, for example, to restrict the free movement of people and the welfare benefits for immigrants to Britain.
“In Prague, the EPP leadership will start a strategic debate on the British proposals and their consequences for the future of the EU,” Hannibal said.
The meeting should also bring European issues to Czech politics. This is also why Kalousek and Belobradek were invited to it, Hannibal said.
He said more than 50 MEPs, who make up the EPP broad leadership, are to come to Prague, including Czechs Pavel Svoboda, Michaela Sojdrova (both KDU-CSL) and Ludek Niedermayer (for TOP 09).
After the two-day discussion about the future of the EU, the EPP members will attend a discussion with representatives of churches and religious groups that will focus on migration.
Navracsics, the EU commissioner for education, culture, youth and sports, and Stylianides, who is in charge of humanitarian aid and the settling of crises, and EPP MEPs will discuss migration with Prague Archbishop Dominik Duka and representatives from other groups such as the Orthodox Church, Muslims, the Jewish community and Iraqi Christians.

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