Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Series of "Threats" : EU's Tusk says Trump administration statements 'worrying'

EU chief Donald Tusk hit out Tuesday at "worrying" statements by the administration of Donald Trump, saying Washington's new stance was among a series of "threats," along with China, Russia and radical Islam.

Tusk said in a letter to EU leaders ahead of a summit in Malta that the bloc must take "spectacular steps" to stay together, and should take advantage of US isolationism to boost trade with other countries.

"Today we are dealing with three threats, which have previously not occurred, at least not on such a scale. The first threat, an external one, is related to the new geopolitical situation in the world and around Europe," Tusk said in the letter obtained by AFP.

"An increasingly, let us call it, assertive China, especially on the seas, Russia's aggressive policy towards Ukraine and its neighbors, wars, terror and anarchy in the Middle East and in Africa, with radical Islam playing a major role, as well as worrying declarations by the new American administration all make our future highly unpredictable," Tusk said.

"Particularly the change in Washington puts the European Union in a difficult situation; with the new administration seeming to put into question the last 70 years of American foreign policy," Tusk added.

The second threat, said Trump, was the internal challenge posed by a rise in anti-EU nationalism, and the third was the "state of mind of the pro-European elites."

All 28 EU leaders will discuss migration at Friday's summit in Malta.

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