Friday, 22 June, 2018

Merkel spokesman: Germany still seeking stronger US ties

President Donald Trump shakes hands with French President Emmanuel Macron during a meeting at the U.S. Embassy in Brussels. Trump hasn’t done a lot of public speaking during his big trip abroad. But the president After Trip's Final Day, Trump to Return to Tumult at Home
Sammy Stanley | 30 May, 2017, 01:54

"One day after Donald Trump infuriated Angela Merkel and the rest of his G-7 peers, when the USA president refused to endorse the Paris climate treaty, prompting the German chancellor to say that “the whole discussion about climate has been hard, or rather very unsatisfactory. here we have the situation that six members, or even seven if you want to add the European Union, stand against one", Germany's prime minister made what many have dubbed, an "era-defining" statement.

"The times when we could fully rely on others have passed us by a little bit, that's what I've experienced in recent days", she said while speaking at an event in Munich. "And that is why I can only say, we Europeans must really take our destiny in our own hands". Saudi investment in US arms and cooperation on terrorism seem to have led to a change of heart, and he was more comfortable with King Salman and other Arab leaders like Egypt's el-Sisi than with the likes of Angela Merkel later in the trip.

"Because trans-Atlantic relations are so important to this chancellor, it is right from her viewpoint to speak out honestly about differences", Seibert said.

Merkel said that the relationship between Berlin and new French President Emmanuel Macron should be a priority.

The Christian Democratic Union (CDU) of Germany, led by Merkel, got 38 percent of the voter support while the Social Democratic Party (SPD), headed by ex-President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz, fell to 25 percent, according to the opinion poll designed by research institute Emnid and local media Bild am Sonntag.

"This becomes an interesting game of who is a better match for Trump", she said.

"With change comes insecurity, skepticism. and, not infrequently, the glorification of the supposedly good old days", Merkel said.

UK police arrest 16th person in connection with Manchester attack
Elsewhere in Manchester , investigators have executed a warrant at an address on Moss Side, where a search is now under way. She went on to defend the work of the security services, amid reports that warnings about Abedi were not followed up.

Even as Dr Merkel positions herself ahead of the election, the message could be the signal of a shift away from the United States, perhaps even one that could outlast Mr Trump's time in office, and that would weaken USA global power over the long term.

Although relations between Washington and Europe have been strained at times since 1945, before Mr Trump there has rarely been such a strong feeling from European leaders that they must turn away from Washington and prepare to face the world alone.

And Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, also a Social Democrat, said Monday that if the Trump administration "finds pushing through national interests more important than an global order. then I say that the West has become smaller - it has at least become weaker". Although her message was partly aimed at her own electorate, it was a measure of how badly relations have deteriorated with Mr Trump's United States that hitting Washington now wins votes while working with it could be perilous.

Then at the G7 summit on Friday and Saturday, leaders including Merkel failed to convince Trump to commit to stay in the Paris climate deal. "That means there are so far no signs whether the United States of America will remain in the Paris agreement or not".

While he was attending the G7 meetings in Italy, Trump criticized German auto sales to the USA, failed to agree with his counterparts on refugee policy or climate change, and announced upon his return that he will make a decision on whether to pull out of the Paris Climate agreement this week.

During his trip, Trump also echoed his past criticism of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies for failing to meet the defensive alliance's military spending commitment of two percent of GDP.

"It became clear at the G7, when there was no agreement with the United States of America, how long and rocky this path would be", Merkel said at a conference on sustainable development.

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