Slovenia's prime minister Marjan Sarec talks to a reporter during an interview with the Associated Press in Ljubljana, Slovenia, Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

AP Interview: Slovenia leader says EU must counter populism

April 23, 2019 - 11:19 am

LJUBLJANA, Slovenia (AP) — Slovenia's liberal prime minister, whose government has kept an anti-immigrant party at bay in the small nation, says the European Union needs a new, more efficient leadership to counter populist surge and the mounting influence of Russia and China.

Marjan Sarec said in an interview Tuesday that mainstream European officials and leaders have failed to deter right-wing groups which are slated to make strong gains at next month's European Parliament elections.

Prolonged Brexit talks, Sarec says, are as an example of "how things are done in the European Union." He urged for a more pro-active leadership to be formed after the May 23-26 vote warning that "If European Union falls apart then we are doomed."

He says that "it is very brutal, but it is like this."

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