EU president-elect Ursula von der Leyen on Thursday made her first trip to Brussels since being nominated as senior officials sought to shore up support for her appointment in the European Parliament.
After talks with Jean-Claude Juncker, the man she is to replace as European Commission president, current German defence minister von der Leyen tweeted she had come to seek “smart advice” as she prepares her plan for the next five years.
She must win the approval of the highly fragmented European Parliament, where there have been grumblings about the deal to appoint her, which was cooked up by EU national leaders over three days of tortuous summit wrangling.
“My priorities will be to seek smart advice, listen to all parliamentary groups and together work out the best plan for the future of Europe,” von der Leyen tweeted, a day after talks with MEPs at the parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France.
The multilingual von der Leyen — the first woman to be named to lead the EU’s executive arm — sent out the same message in Englsh, French and German after a warm welcome from Juncker at commission headquarters in Brussels.