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EU leaders urged to "reconnect with citizens" after constitution crisis

[JURIST] European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso [official website] Thursday called for a "period of reflection" on the proposed European constitution [JURIST news archive], now largely in political limbo, in order to "reconnect with our citizens and stimulate a genuine, wide-ranging - but focused - debate." Barroso said "no" votes by France and the Netherlands would be respected [UK Press Association report], but also called the proposed constitution "the best possible compromise" and a "victim of circumstance" [full text of speech]. The French in particular are said to have been more concerned with perceived failures of President Jacques Chirac [JURIST report] than with the constitution itself. RTE News has more.

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