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Germany

Fischer Calls for Redefinition of Transatlantic Ties

German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer has appealed for a fundamental renewal of transatlantic ties, strained after rifts over the U.S. decision to go to war against Iraq. Addressing the German parliament during a debate on Wednesday, Fischer pleaded for a "strategic debate over the transatlantic relationship" and stressed it was an important cornerstone for peace and stability. Fischer also told news magazine Stern this week that the transatlantic relationship had to be "defined anew" and added "we must approach the other, from both sides." Fischer criticized the U.S. "domino theory" that a free Iraq could stabilize the Middle East and that one country after the other could be democratized. The foreign minister said U.S. policy in Iraq had so far been unsuccessful and emphasized the U.N. should "play the central role."