Germany <said/says> ... that it would clear illegal Roma camps

Oros

Senior Member
Korean
Germany says a claim by French President Nicolas Sarkozy that it would clear illegal Roma camps was based on a "misunderstanding".

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle denied the claim by Mr Sarkozy, who had earlier had a row with the European Commission over French deportations of Roma (Gypsies).

But Germany is returning thousands of Roma refugees - many of them children - to Kosovo. They are not EU citizens.

The Roma issue dominated an EU summit.
Since August, France has dismantled about 200 Roma settlements and deported about 1,000 of their inhabitants to Romania and Bulgaria. It has also evicted French nationals from illegal traveller settlements.



France has been accused of violating EU rules on human rights, by allegedly targeting an ethnic group.

Mr Sarkozy said German Chancellor Angela Merkel had told him that Germany would also clear Roma camps, and he added: "We'll see how calm German politics will become then."


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Germany says ... that it would clear illegal Roma camps ...[ Is this fine?]

I think it should be ' Germany said ... that it would clear illegal Roma camps ...'
 
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    I think they used the present here to tell us that Germany still holds this opinion about their misunderstanding with Sarkozy. This is common language in newspapers: U.S. believes that it's the only country in the world - this could well be a title in a U.S. paper although I made it up.

    Anytime you see a statement in the present like that in the papers, it's a good idea to check and see if they have this meaning in mind. More often than not, I find that it explains the use of the present in a report about the past:

    Ed Jones believes that city council should do something about the homeless. = Ed Jones told us this and still believes it.
     
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