Leaders of the European Common market met in Italy on Thursday (12 June) to discuss a wide range of problems -- in particular the Middle East and the world's economic difficulties.
GV Helicopter flying over summit venue in Venice
GV & SV Frogmen checking canal (2 shots)
SV PAN Launch along canal with British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
GV Leaders together, including Mrs. Thatcher and Chancellor Schmidt of West Germany
GV Helicopter overhead
GV Schmidt entering, followed by Mrs. Thatcher and other leaders
GV Giscard d'Estaing of France arriving and entering building
GV Hall with leaders inside, preparing to sit at table (3 shots)
SV Giscard and Schmidt talking at table
SV U.K. Defence Secretary Lord Carrington talking to Mrs. Thatcher PAN ALONG other leaders
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Background: Leaders of the European Common market met in Italy on Thursday (12 June) to discuss a wide range of problems -- in particular the Middle East and the world's economic difficulties. For security reasons, the nine heads of state held their talks on an island in the middle of the Venice lagoon.
They met in a former monastery on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore, with helicopters and police frogmen providing the security measures instead of the usual motorcycle policemen. And rather than a procession of limousines, the leaders arrived from their hotels on the mainland by motor launch -- like Britain's Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. After the morning session, Mrs. Thatcher held a private lunch with the Italian Premier, Francesco Cossiga, who was the summit host.
The most delicate problem facing the European leaders was how to carry forward their projected Middle East initiative following reservations expressed by the United States and Israel. They also held discussions on the planned trip to Moscow by the West German Chancellor, Helmut Schmidt, on June the thirtieth and July the first. His visit is intended to keep alive an East-West dialogue on key issues such as arms control despite the damage caused to detente by the Soviet actions in Afghanistan.
President Giscard d'Estaing of France and Chancellor Schmidt held private discussions in the morning before the summit began. President Giscard was expected to tell the other leaders about his meeting in Warsaw last month with the Soviet President, Leonid Brezhnev.
Common Market countries have proposed that, in return for the withdrawal of Soviet forces, Afghanistan should be made neutral. The proposal has been supported by President Carter and a number of non-aligned and Asian countries. Latest developments in Iran and the Gulf also were discussed.
The leaders have decided to do nothing which would cut across the stalled Camp David peace process between Egypt, Israel and the United States. Officials said that if a Common Market mission was sent to the Middle East, it would merely have exploratory talks.