Socialists riled by European ‘snub pact’
PARIS | The Socialist front-runner in France’s presidential election, Francois Hollande, hit out at an alleged pact Sunday among right-wing European leaders to snub him ahead of the April-may vote.
The conservative leaders of Britain, Germany, Italy and Spain agreed not to meet Mr. Hollande because of his promise to renegotiate an EU stability pact, Germany’s Der Spiegel magazine said in its edition to be published Monday.
Der Spiegel said that right-wing European leaders were “scandalized” by Mr. Hollande’s declared intent to renegotiate the budgetary discipline pact signed Friday that they consider key to saving the eurozone.
The right-wing wall of silence allegedly also would have been agreed to bolster the re-election chances of incumbent conservative President Nicolas Sarkozy, Der Spiegel said.
Mr. Hollande, who is tipped by polls to beat Mr. Sarkozy — 30.5 percent to 23 percent in the first round — has said he wants the treaty renegotiated to deal more specifically with economic growth and jobs.