The head of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso and French leader Nicolas Sarkozy were involved in a clash over the issue of Gypsy expulsions from France, AFP reports, quoting several European sources. The heated discussion took place during the working lunch of the European Council in Brussels on Thursday, according to the source. On the other hand, Romanian President Traian Basescu also had a discussion of Sarkozy, and journalists in Brussels expect a confirmation of a meeting of the two after the summit.

The discussion between Barroso and Sarkozy was rough, according to Bulgarian PM Boiko Borisov. Barroso allegedly pleaded his support for European Commissioner Viviane Reding. The incident was admitted by another AFP source as well.

Media in Brussels announce some tensions at the summit considering that on Wednesday evening Jean Claude Junker and Viviane Reding missed from the EPP reunion which united European center-right leaders and was joined by Presidents Basescu and Sarkozy.

According to Le Figaro, French President Nicolas Sarkozy denied an incident with Commission President Barroso took place. Sarkozy urged all parties to return to calm, but assured that Viviane Reding statements on the expulsions from France "shocked" all heads of state and government profoundly.