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

Published: Updated:

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.

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.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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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