Monday, 29 May 2017

Merkel: Europe 'can no longer rely on allies' after Trump and Brexit

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="624"]during a private audience at the Vatican, 4 April 2017. during a private audience at the Vatican, 4 April 2017.[/caption]

The German chancellor says Europe must "fight for its own destiny" at an election campaign event.


During a private audience at the Vatican, 4 April 2017.

Mrs Merkel said she wanted friendly relations with both countries as well as Russia but Europe now had to "fight for its own destiny".

Her comments come after Mr Trump refused to re-commit to the 2015 Paris climate deal at the G7 summit.

Mrs Merkel is on the campaign trail ahead of elections in September.

"The times in which we could completely depend on others are on the way out.

On Saturday, the German leader had described climate change talks at the G7 group of rich nations as "very unsatisfactory".

Leaders from the UK, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan had re-affirmed their support for the Paris accord - but Mr Trump said he would make a decision in the coming week.

Mr Trump has previously pledged to abandon the Paris deal, and expressed doubts about climate change.

Speaking in Brussels last week, Mr Trump also told Nato members to spend more money on defence and did not re-state his administration's commitment to Nato's mutual security guarantees.

Mrs Merkel's latest comments are partly a move to appeal to German voters first and foremost, the BBC's Europe editor Katya Adler says.

Polls suggest Mrs Merkel is on course to be re-elected for a fourth term as German chancellor at elections in September.

Passionate Merkel - BBC's Damien McGuinness in Berlin:

It might have been thanks to the beer, pretzels and Bavarian brass-band enlivening the crowd.

But Mrs Merkel's words were uncharacteristically passionate and unusually forthright.

Rapturous applause greeted her fiery calls for Europeans to fight for their own destiny.
No wonder she's sounding confident.With four months to go before elections, Angela Merkel's position also looks stronger than ever domestically. Initial enthusiasm for her centre-left rival Martin Schulz has fizzled out.

She might not have welcomed Brexit or Trump. But it seems that Mrs Merkel has decided that standing up for the EU will only strengthen her chances of winning another term in September.

May 29, 20171:02 am

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