Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi stepped up his attacks against other European Union leaders after an EU summit in Bratislava which he said amounted to “a nice cruise on the Danube.” Renzi said he was dissatisfied with its closing statement, after he was excluded from a joint news conference by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande. Source Reuters
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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan plans to campaign across Europe in order to mobilize support for his upcoming constitutional referendum, which would further consolidate executive powers. Turkey’s prime minister, Binali Yildirim, already got a head start this weekend. Source: Handelsblatt
Brussels is investigating a showcase Chinese rail project that aims to extend Beijing’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative into the heart of Europe, potentially putting the EC at loggerheads with China. The commission’s probe is into a planned 350km high-speed railway between Serbia’s capital, Belgrade, and Budapest in Hungary. Source: FT
French far-right leader Marine Le Pen has gained some ground on her main election rivals, independent Emmanuel Macron and conservative Francois Fillon, but would still lose to either of them in the May 7 runoff for the presidency, a poll showed on Monday. Source Reuters