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UK PM claims ‘paternity’ of Macron’s European community plan

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday said he was interested by French President Emmanuel Macron’s push for a broader “European community,” and that the idea was originally his.

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Macron has floated a plan for the European Union – which Britain left in 2020 – to meet with like-minded countries from across the continent to discuss regional issues.

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The EU is planning to hold a summit before the end of the year and France says the loose group could include partners like Ukraine and even Britain.

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Johnson said he had discussed the plan with Macron at the G7 summit in Germany and he thought it was “worth looking at.”

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He said it could be broadened out to include North Africa and Turkey.

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“Emmanuel has an idea, which I actually claim paternity of this idea,” Johnson told journalists.

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“I had this idea back when I first became Foreign Secretary.”

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He said the forum should cover the territory encompassed by the “Mare Nostrum of the Roman Empire.”

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“There’s got to be a role for all of us in a wider conversation about issues that affect all of us,” Johnson said.

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But the British premier – who spearheaded the campaign to leave the EU – said that maybe the plan should be to build relationships rather than “inventing new structures.”

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