Europe can no longer rely on US, Britain: Merkel
- Author: Leroy Wright May 30, 2017,
May 30, 2017, 2:31
U.S. President Donald Trump, who once called global warming a hoax, refused to go along with his six counterparts in reaffirming their support for the 2015 Paris Agreement, which aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions in order to limit the rise in global temperatures.
Europe can no longer completely rely on its allies, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Sunday, pointing to bruising meetings of G7 wealthy nations and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation last week. "All I can say is that we Europeans must really take our destiny into our own hands".
Just before her meeting with Trump and other leaders from the G7 in Brussels, Merkel welcomed former President Barack Obama with a celebration at the Brandenburg Gate, underscoring her tension with his successor.
Merkel also emphasized the continued need for friendly relations with the USA and others, and spokesman Steffen Seibert said Monday that the chancellor is "a convinced trans-Atlanticist".
"The times when we could completely rely on others are, to an extent, over", Merkel said at a campaign event in Munich.
"I've experienced that in the last few days", Merkel said at a CDU election rally in Munich.
At the Sunday campaign event, Merkel said that Europeans would continue to work in friendship with the USA, the United Kingdom and others wherever possible, including Russian Federation, but stressed her view that Europeans must be self-reliant.
Turning to France, Merkel said she wished President Emmanuel Macron success, adding to applause: "Where Germany can help, Germany will help, because Germany can only do well if Europe is doing well".
Seibert stressed that this remained the case.
Where Europe's relationship with the USA during the Cold War and in its immediate aftermath had a strong emotional component, Merkel's comments suggest she now sees them as more "pragmatic and transactional", said Sylke Tempel, an expert with the German Council on Foreign Relations. "They are a firm pillar of our foreign and security policy, and Germany will continue to work to strengthen these relations".
In Vienna, European Central Bank Governing Council member Ewald Nowotny was asked whether hard political relations between Europe and the United States were causing any downside risk for the world economy.
"Europe is the answer, and stronger cooperation between the European countries at all levels is the answer to Donald Trump", Schulz said on ARD public television.
"The short-sighted policies of the American government stand against the interests of the European Union", he said, judging that "the West has become smaller, at least it has become weaker".
Mr Trump later tweeted that he would make his "final decision" on the Paris accord this week.
"There are no indications whether the United States will stay in the Paris Agreement or not."
"I think we hit a home run no matter where we are", Mr Trump said.