European Council President Charles Michel has gone into quarantine after a security officer tested positive for COVID-19.


Yves Herman/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

A key European Union summit planned for later this week has been postponed after European Council President Charles Michel went into quarantine.

The president’s spokesman Barend Leyts tweeted that Michel had gone into isolation after a security officer, with whom he was in close contact early last week, tested positive for COVID-19.

“The President is tested regularly and tested negative yesterday,” Leyts said in the tweet, adding, “Respecting Belgian rules, he has gone into quarantine as of today.”

The meeting of EU leaders was scheduled to take place on Thursday and Friday but has now been postponed until Oct. 1 and 2.

Among the issues due to be discussed at the gathering in Brussels were relations with Turkey and progress in the Brexit talks, with the next formal round set to take place between Sept. 28 and Oct. 2.

On Tuesday, Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Turkey and Greece were ready to resume exploratory talks amid a dispute over territorial waters in the eastern Mediterranean, following a scheduled videoconference call with Michel and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Cyprus’ veto of EU sanctions against Belarus was also on the agenda for the now postponed summit. EU foreign ministers failed to agree sanctions against Belarusian officials on Monday after Cyprus blocked the plan.

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