I've a question about Sarkozy's EU-Ukraine Summit quote.
Taras of Ukrainiana has translated Channel 1+1's voiceover translation here:
[...] French President Nicolas Sarkozy: This association agreement [to be signed in 2009] does not close any paths, nor does it open any paths. That’s all we could give. [...]
Kyiv Post has a similar translation:
[...] In a cautious statement at the EU summit, French President Nicolas Sarkozy, whose country holds the rotating presidency, said: “The association agreement neither opens nor closes any route [for Ukraine].” [...]
And so does Deutsche Welle:
[...] The "association agreement" that emerged form the summit offers Kiev enhanced status in its dealings with the EU. But it does not say anything about whether Ukraine could possibly join the bloc some day. Indeed the agreement, as Sarkozy stressed to the press, "neither opens nor closes any route." [...]
Financial Times, however, provides a quote that carries a different meaning:
[...] “Be clear that this agreement shuts no door, and maybe it opens some doors. This is the most we could offer, but I believe it to be a substantial step,” Nicolas Sarkozy, France’s president, told reporters. [...]
The Times offers what seems like only part of the original sound bite:
[...] “This accord does not close any avenues,” Mr Sarkozy said. “It is the maximum that we could do and I believe that it is already an essential step.” [...]
And so does BBC:
[...] He underlined that the accord left the path for future membership of the 27-member state bloc open, saying: "This association accord does not close any avenues." [...]
The Wall Street Journal has cut the original quote even more:
[...] At a news conference with Mr. Yushchenko and EU Commission President José Manuel Barroso, Mr. Sarkozy summarized the EU's position toward Ukraine as "this is the maximum we can do." [...]
And so has Bloomberg.com:
[...] "It was the maximum we could offer, but I think it was a substantial step," Sarkozy told a press conference after hosting an EU-Ukraine summit in Paris today. Yushchenko said the EU's "message is full of hope and holds much promise." [...]
The Irish Times provides more of the original - and, at the same time, less:
[...] Asked whether he favoured Ukrainian accession, Mr Sarkozy hid behind his role as acting president of the EU Council. "I am not speaking as president of France," he said. "I am speaking in the name of the EU. The name of this is an association agreement . . . The EU has not authorised me to make any other decision or any other announcements . . . Within the council there are varying positions. My concern is European unity. This is something we explained to our friend, the president of Ukraine. This was the most we could offer, but I believe this to be a substantial step." [...]
The French Embassy in the UK has posted a rather detailed transcript, but their translation echoes that of the Financial Times (or is it the other way around?):
Q. – You talked about Ukraine’s European orientation. I’d like to know if this European orientation goes as far as considering Ukrainian accession to the European Union in the short, medium or long term. Can you tell us what you yourself think?
THE PRESIDENT – Thank you for allowing me reply totally freely. I’m not talking as the French President, I’m not talking in my own name, I’m talking on behalf of the EU and so I’m saying what the EU’s position is. The EU’s position: to negotiate an association agreement, making it clear that this association agreement closes no avenue, and even opens some up. (…) The EU wanted, as President Barroso said, at this specific moment in the region’s situation, to reaffirm the community of values, community of history, Europeanness in the cultural sense of the word with Ukraine. The EU hasn’t authorized me to take other decisions or make other announcements. But the words mean something; it’s the first time such vocabulary has been used. That said, within the Council, there are different positions and President Barroso’s concern, like mine, is Europe’s unity, it’s in fact what we explained to our friend, the Ukrainian President, that it was as far as we could go. But I believe it’s already a substantial step.
So my question is: what did he actually say at that press conference? Does this agreement open some new doors or not?
Has anyone encountered the original recording of Sarkozi's remark? I did a quick search but couldn't find anything, and even if I did, I don't know French, so there is no way for me to figure that out. Please help!