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Thursday, 23 May, 2002, 09:20 GMT 10:20 UK
Commissioners called before Euro MPs

Two European commissioners are due to appear before members of the European parliament today to answer allegations that they bowed to Spanish pressure to delay major reforms to Europe's fishing policy.

The vice-president of the European Commission, Neil Kinnock, and the fishing commissioner, Franz Fischler, both deny the accusations.

Proposals for the reforms, which are aimed at improving dwindling fishing stocks, were allegedly delayed last month after a phone call from the Spanish prime minister, Jose Maria Aznar, to the president of the European Commission, Romano Prodi.

The EU spends over $900m (1bn euros) per year to support the fishing industry, half of which goes to Spain.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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