Cameron in Paris as French fight UK bank-shield demand
UK Prime Minister David Cameron has travelled to Paris on Monday to press President Francois Hollande as France leads the objections to British plans to reform the European Union. With France heading a group of euroarea countries unhappy with Cameron's push for safeguards for banks in the City of London, the British prime minister will sit down with Hollande in the Elysee Palace at 7 p.m. local time, according to a statement from the French president's office. Hollande was scheduled to meet EU President Donald Tusk at noon.
Diplomacy is intensifying in the run-up to an EU summit in Brussels on Thursday when Cameron aims to strike a deal he can sell to the British people ahead of a referendum on whether to stay in the EU.
France's criticism of some of Britain's demands to shield its banks from rules governing the euro region has emerged as one of the biggest sticking points. Cameron needs the endorsement from all 27 other EU leaders for the changes to take effect.
Tensions between France and Britain have marked European history for the past millennium. A nobleman from Normandy in northern France claimed the English crown after defeating the Saxon incumbent at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 and 900 years later Hollande's predecessor Charles de Gaulle twice vetoed the U.K.'s early attempts to join the EU.