June 13, 2019 / 2:16 PM / 7 days ago

We do not need 'Spitzenkandidaten' for Commission chief - Czech PM Babis

FILE PHOTO: Czech Republic's Prime Minister Andrej Babis arrives for the informal meeting of European Union leaders in Sibiu, Romania, May 9, 2019. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir

PRAGUE (Reuters) - Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis said on Thursday that the next European Commission should be led by a candidate reflecting the needs of all EU member states and not one of the “Spitzenkandidaten”, or lead candidates proposed by factions in the European Parliament.

The “Spitzenkandidat” system aims to put a lawmaker selected by the European assembly into the top Commission job, but this is not automatic and the position will be discussed by EU national leaders in the coming weeks.

The strongest party in the European Parliament is the European People’s Party and its lead candidate is Germany’s Manfred Weber.

Babis made his comments in a tweet after talks with central European counterparts.

Reporting by Jan Lopatka; Editing by Kevin Liffey

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