France dismisses UK's hopes for three-way alliance in Europe

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France dismisses UK's hopes for three-way alliance in Europe

BRITISH HOPES of a three-way alliance with Germany and France received a set-back yesterday when a senior French minister dismissed the idea of the UK fulfilling such a central role. In an interview with Corriere della Sera, the Italian daily, Hubert Vedrine, France's Foreign Minister, said that "it goes without saying that it is positive for the three capitals to get on well".

"But, despite its weight, Great Britain cannot have in Europe the same role as those countries which have created the euro and will join it."

Meanwhile, Italy's Prime Minister, Romano Prodi, will go before parliament tomorrow to admit his centre-left coalition no longer commands a majority of votes. The admission will kick off a confidence debate likely to bring about his resignation by the end of the week.

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