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BRUSSELS (AP) -- The head of the European Union slammed President Barack Obama's plan to spend nearly $2 trillion to push the U.S. economy out of recession as "the road to hell" that EU governments must avoid.
The blunt comments by Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek to the European Parliament on Wednesday highlighted simmering European differences with Washington ahead of a key summit next week on fixing the world economy. It was the strongest pushback yet from a European leader as the 27-nation bloc bristles from U.S. criticism that it is not spending enough to stimulate demand. Shocked by the outburst, other European politicians went into damage control mode, with some reproaching the Czech leader for his language and others reaffirming their good diplomatic ties with the United States. The leaders of EU's major nations -- France, Britain and Germany, among others -- largely ignored Topolanek and his remarks.