Deputy PM: Rutte isn't after EU presidency

no image
No image availableNL Times

Rumors that Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is setting himself up as candidate for the new president of the EU, to take the place of Herman van Rompuy, are "nonsense", said Deputy PM Lodewijk Asscher on Friday. The rumors came from Italian newspaper La Republica.

The paper announced that German Chancellor Angela Merkel could see Rutte as Van Rompuy's successor, whose term will end in November. Deputy PM Asscher, however, made it known that Rutte will return to The Hague as Prime Minister after the EU Summit on Friday.

Rumors about the possible new EU president don't stop at the Dutch Prime Minister, however. Danish Prime Minister Hellen Thorning-Schmidt is also projected as possible successor to Van Rompuy. She is a Social Democrat.

At the EU Summit in Brussels today, leaders will discuss the share of the new European top positions.