EU foreign ministers met this Sunday in Brussels. The scope of the meeting was Donald Trump being the next president of the United States. The meeting was scheduled in haste after the result of the US election. Most European political leaders were expecting a different outcome to the election, based on polls and forecasts. Taking into account the rhetoric used by Donald Trump during the campaign, EU leaders don’t know what to expect from the United States in the future. The European Union is a close ally of the United States on many issues from Iran to Russia to fighting climate change.
Donald Trump’s Election Signals Change
The election of Donald Trump in the United States leaves European leaders puzzled. Also, it leaves some of them in a somewhat embarrassing situation. Since they openly campaigned against Donald Trump in the days before the election. The relationship between the United States and Europe now spells uncertainty. Officials from EU countries in charge of foreign policy are looking forward to finding out where the next president, Donald Trump, stands on multiple issues.
So far, what EU officials know about Donald Trump’s position on key issues comes from speeches on the campaign trail and interviews. While he was a candidate, Donald Trump questioned many things that are a priority for Europe. The European Union relies on close cooperation with the United States on many issues. But Donald Trump seems ready and willing to challenge anything. Even something as pivotal as America guaranteeing Europe’s security. It has been a key element of US foreign policy since World War II. But President-elect Donald Trump might see things differently.
EU Leaders Prepare for Trump Presidency
At the meeting, the chief of EU foreign policy Federica Mogherini said that she fully expects for the partnership between the European Union and the United States to endure. She said that the EU and the US share “values, principles and interests”. However, Mogherini said that the European should be more independent when it comes to matters of defense and security. She also talked about “the need to strengthen European unity around some key issues that will be even more crucial in the months to come.”
The foreign ministers of EU countries already had meetings scheduled for Monday and Tuesday. The meeting on Sunday evening was a recent addition to the schedule. Not all the foreign ministers of the EU were present. The UK and France did not participate since they did not consider the result of the US election a crisis. The Hungarian foreign minister was also absent. The Budapest government welcomed Donald Trump winning the election in the United States.
The expectation is that Donald Trump is going to have a different set of foreign policy priorities. The issues that the Obama administration considered important, like climate change, are no longer going to be at the center of US foreign policy. But the extent to which the relationship between the European Union and the United States is going to change remains unknown at the moment.
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