EU leaders set to meet just after EU election, officials say

EU leaders set to meet just after EU election, officials say

National leaders of the European Union are likely to meet for a summit in Brussels on May 28, two days after a European Parliament election, to discuss who should run the EU executive for the next five years, officials said on Friday.

The meeting, similar to one held after the previous vote in 2014, would give leaders a chance to discuss their preferences for who will succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as president of the European Commission, three senior EU officials told Reuters.

Parliament, which will convene on July 2 after being elected on May 23-26, is pushing the European Council of national leaders to nominate Juncker’s successor from among the lead candidates of winning parties. But many national leaders are reluctant to accept this so-called Spitzenkandidat process.

Council President Donald Tusk is likely to announce plans for the special summit during a gathering of leaders in Sibiu, Romania next Thursday. They are due formally to nominate a Commission chief at a Brussels summit on June 20-21. The nominee would then require endorsement by the European Parliament. [Reuters]

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