The EU wants to see more African involvement in Mali. Paris has suggested a mission of African nations, under UN leadership.
France and Germany increasingly hold the keys to the EU's foreign policy. While Paris focuses on the Syrian conflict to offset domestic turmoil, Berlin finds economic and security grounds to confront the Ukraine crisis.
EU leaders are meeting to decide on who will replace the European Council president and the foreign policy chief. A promising candidate has withdrawn herself from the running.
France and Germany's already strained relationship is being tested by the question of who will become the EU's new economic commissioner. Things could come to a head at Saturday's EU summit, writes Bernd Riegert.
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has announced a new government after the cabinet resigned following infighting over the country's economy. Analysts said the move was also a signal to France's European partners.
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