PM Tsipras Confirms Support for Frans Timmermans for Commission President

EU Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans, right, jokes with Parliament members at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France, Wednesday, July 5, 2017. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)

BRUSSELS (ANA/N. Roubos) – Selecting European People Party’s candidate Manfred Weber as European Commission president would be a negative development for Europe, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said at the preparatory meeting of the Party of European Socialists (PES) on Tuesday.

In statements to the press following the PES meeting, the Greek premier supports a progressive candidate like FransTimmermans, PES candidate, as long as he comes out ahead in the European Council and the European Parliament.

According to diplomatic sources, the Greek premier said in his intervention at the meeting that the candidates’ programme should be taken into account, especially if they promote an end to austerity, a social Europe and dealing with climate change.

Following the PES meeting, Tsipras is attending an informal dinner of the European Commission focused on reviewing the results of Euroelections and assessing candidates for senior EU positions. The dinner will be held by European Council President Donald Tusk, who will hold a joint press conference with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker following it.