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New EU chief vows to address reform demands to keep Britain in the bloc

Published on Aug 31, 2014 5:20 AM

BRUSSELS (REUTERS) - Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk, fresh from being chosen as part of the European Union's new leadership team, held out an olive branch to Britain on Saturday, saying he was prepared to compromise on British concerns to keep the country in the EU.

Prime Minister David Cameron had publicly thrown his support behind Tusk this week to be the new head of the EU Council, representing the bloc's 28 governments, in hopes that the centre-right Polish leader would help him push through reforms to the EU, which he sees as too centralised and bureaucratic.

Tusk's election follows Cameron's failed attempt to block former Luxembourg Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker from becoming the next leader of the EU's executive body, the European Commission, on grounds that he was too federalist.

Tusk, who will also chair euro zone summits despite Poland, like Britain, not using the single currency, made the gesture to Britain in his first public statement after being chosen as next president of the European Council at an EU summit in Brussels.

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