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Die Presse - Austria | Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Germany has no business criticising France

Several politicians of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party used the occasion of French Prime Minister Manuel Valls' visit to Berlin on Monday to voice harsh criticism of France's domestic policy. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, however, did not join in. And for good reason, the liberal-conservative daily Die Presse argues: "Now that Berlin's self-confidence is greater than ever, it must be pointed out that a few years after reunification Germany was considered a problem in terms of its economic policy. And we must also remember who held out a conciliatory hand to the loser after the war, with the aim of unifying Europe. It was France. Germany and France were always opposite poles which, until a few years ago, guaranteed the balanced development of the EU, from which admittedly they benefited most. Paris must now get a grip on its problems not just for its own sake, but to ensure a credible future for the EU. And Germany would be well advised to be helpful rather than self-righteous in supporting its partner."

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