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The Latest: Merkel backs extra time for EU’s top jobs

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Journalists rest during a late night negotiating session at an EU summit in Brussels, Monday, July 1, 2019. European Union leaders participated in another marathon session of talks desperately seeking a breakthrough in a diplomatic fight over who should be picked for a half dozen of jobs at the top of EU institutions. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

BRUSSELS (AP) — The Latest on the European Union summit (all times local):

1:25 p.m.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says it’s worth spending a little more time to achieve as broad a consensus as possible on the European Union’s future leadership.

Merkel said after EU leaders put off their quest to fill the bloc’s top jobs until Tuesday that there were “big member states that couldn’t live … with the proposals we had today.” She didn’t offer details.

She suggested that, while it would be technically possible to outvote big countries, it would be unwise.

Merkel said that “politics is attempting to implement what is possible, and sometimes that takes time.”

She added: “If we rushed things now … and then lived with insurmountable tensions in the European Council for five years, we would be asked: ‘Why couldn’t you take one more day, and sleep on it for one night, and look again to see whether there is a new point of view?'”

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1:10 p.m.

French President Emmanuel Macron says the European Union should learn lessons from the “failure” by EU leaders to agree on who will get the bloc’s top jobs.

Macron told reporters that an all-night summit with the EU’s 28 leaders “gives an image of Europe that is not serious” because it resulted in a stalemate.

This failure, he said, should lead to “deep changes” to how the EU’s institutions operate.

The EU leaders agreed to meet again Tuesday.

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12:45 p.m.

A high-level EU official says that the possible appointment of World Bank official Kristalina Georgieva is part of the problem why the EU summit has been suspended for a day since it was unclear she would get sufficient backing. 

The official, who asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the talks, said that finding the balance to appease all the different interests was still too difficult after two summits and a grinding all-nighter among EU leaders at Brussels headquarters. 

The official said that there are “so many different scenarios being discussed,” this despite informal talks that had already earmarked Dutch socialist Frans Timmermans to replace European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Georgieva to succeed European Council President Donald Tusk.

–By Raf Casert.

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12:30 p.m.

European Union leaders have suspended their top jobs summit without result and plan to meet again Tuesday morning to try to break the deadlock.

A spokesman for European Council President Donald Tusk tweeted Monday that Tusk “suspends the meeting and reconvenes #EUCO tomorrow at 11h.”

The leaders had been meeting for more than 18 hours to try to name up to five candidates to lead the EU’s main institutions for at least the next five years.

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10:45 a.m.

A European Union official says leaders are moving closer to filling a handful of the block’s key posts.

The official say Dutch socialist Frans Timmermans is in prime position to succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as head of the European Commission.

The high-ranking diplomat involved in the talks says that the Christian Democrats would have Bulgaria’s Kristalina Georgieva follow Donald Tusk as head of the European Council, which coordinates policies of member states and organizes summits.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the 28 leaders had not yet reconvened for the formal summit where they should confirm the jobs.

–By Raf Casert.

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10:20 a.m.

European Union officials say leaders pulled an all-nighter at a summit but failed to agree on the list of candidates for the bloc’s key posts, with the marathon talks entering a second day.

The leaders trickled in for bilateral contacts through Sunday before officially convening at around 8 p.m. Sunday. They have been locked in talks ever since amid deep divisions over how to best balance political, geographic and gender considerations among the 28 member nations.

With the selection process bogged down for the second EU summit meeting in a row, the leaders were still considering Dutch socialist Frans Timmermans to replace Christian Democrat Jean-Claude Juncker as president of the EU’s powerful executive arm, the European Commission.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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