[JURIST] German officials have expressed some concern about the future of the proposed European Constitution [text; JURIST news archive] in light of positions taken by two leading rivals for the French presidency. Newly-chosen French Socialist Party candidate Segolene Royal [BBC profile; advocacy website in French], and conservative aspirant Nicolas Sarkozy [BBC profile; party website, in French; JURIST news archive] have both shown reservations about approving the charter after French voters rejected it [JURIST report] last May. Royal, an initial supporter of the pact, backtracked on it during the past year and Sarkozy has advocated a weaker version of the treaty.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel [official website, in German; BBC profile] wants to move forward with the treaty when Germany takes over the six-month rotating EU presidency [official materials] in January 2007. Angelica Schwall-Dueren [official website, in German], an EU expert for Germanys Social Democratic Party (SPD) [party website in German] in parliament, told Reuters that it is hoped the French candidates dont become too attached to positions that make the treaty impossible to ratify. Since Germany wishes to establish a new proposal and timeline for the constitutional treaty at the two-day European Union summit in Brussels that starts on June 21, only a few days after the French election ends, Germanys foreign ministry will discuss the treaty with advisors of both French candidates much earlier. Reuters has more.