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EU commissioner regrets France Nazi comparison

Reuters

France's hardline policy towards Roma migrants has no parallel with World War II deportations, EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding said on Wednesday. Reding's comments were acknowledged by French President Nicolas Sarkozy's office.

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"I regret the interpretations that are distracting attention from a problem that must be solved now," she told French press agency AFP. "I in no way wanted to draw a parallel between World War II and the actions of the French government today."

"I instead defended, in the name of the European Commission, the principles and values on which our European Union was founded."

The French government had condemned Reding's earlier comments, after she said France's crackdown on Roma minorities was "a situation I had thought Europe would not have to witness again after the Second World War."

She was speaking as the European Commission threatened legal action against France over the issue.

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