A top European Union official branded President Donald Trump selfish and capricious Wednesday as EU leaders gathered to count the likely economic damage US policies might inflict on the bloc and to try to rescue the Iran nuclear deal.
In a striking rhetorical assault on the leader of Europe’s biggest ally, EU Council President Donald Tusk said, given Trump’s decisions, “someone could even think ‘with friends like that, who needs enemies?’”
Trump has bewildered the Europeans by threatening to slap tariffs on EU steel and aluminum exports and reneging on an agreement on Iran nuclear program.
Trump has also broken with a key international principle of Middle East peace efforts by moving the US Embassy in the Zionist entity to Al-Quds (Jerusalem) from Tel Aviv.
Tusk’s remarks, just hours before he was to chair a meeting in Bulgaria of the 28 leaders of the world’s biggest trading bloc, underscored the widening gulf in EU-US relations.
Listing Europe’s challenges, Tusk said: “We are witnessing today a new phenomenon, the capricious assertiveness of the American administration.”
“Frankly speaking, Europe should be grateful to President Trump because thanks to him we have got rid of all illusions. He has made us realize that if you need a helping hand, you will find one at the end of your arm,” Tusk said.
In dinner talks in the Bulgarian capital of Sofia, EU leaders were briefed on possible incentives to keep Tehran in the nuclear agreement, even after a key player like the US pulled out.
The US move has paved the way for US sanctions that are likely to hit European companies doing business with Iran. The options being discussed include new credit lines for Iran, increased energy cooperation and the use of EU laws to block European companies from caving in to US sanctions.
Source: Associated Press and Al-Manar