European leaders urge closer cooperation to deal with 'triple crisis'

Updated: 2016-01-21 23:12

By Fu Jing in Davos, Switzerland(China Daily Europe)

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European leaders urge closer cooperation to deal with 'triple crisis'

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras gestures during the session 'The Future of Europe' at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, Jan 21, 2016. [Photo/Agencies]

European leaders urged what they called 'more Europe,' or closer cooperation, in order to meet the "triple crisis" of the continuing influx of migrants, terrorism and a still gloomy economy.

Mark Rutte and Alexis Tsipras, prime ministers of the Netherlands and Greece respectively, and Premier Manuel Valls of France shared the view during a debate on Europe at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

"The influx of migrants (from Syria and Libya) is our immediate crisis and we need to take measures in the coming two or three weeks," said Rutte, whose country has just started a six-month stint as president of the 28-nation European Union .

According to Rutte, the EU will consider more urgent measures to deal with the migrant crisis as soon as possible, and for the forthcoming five or six months the EU's focus will be on constructing a European market for energy, the digital industry, finance and services.

Tsipras, who was elected as Greek prime minister almost a year ago, said his country was "at the heart" of two crises, that of the migrants and economic stagnation.

"To solve the migrant crisis, we need to find a burden-sharing system in all 28 EU countries," he said, adding that Greece, with Italy and other countries in the region, were in the front line of dealing with migrants from the Middle East and North Africa.

He said Greece still needed more help from the EU to help support economic growth.

"We have to be pragmatic because only growth can help solve the problems we face," Tsipras added.

France's Manuel Valls said terrorism attacks in his country were not isolated; Norway and the UK have suffered in recent years.

"They can be seen in Europe and the world, so fighting against them is a global war," Valls said.

He urged stronger global cooperation and the sharing of intelligence in the fight against extremism.

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