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EU leaders to discuss Trump 'threat' in Malta

US President Donald Trump is a potential threat to the European Union, the president of the European Council warns

1 February 2017, 11:18am
European Council President Donald Tusk
European Council President Donald Tusk
In a letter sent to EU leaders meeting in Malta on Friday, the European Council President Donald Tusk warned that US President Donald Trump posed a threat to the European Union.

Tusk, a conservative former premier of Poland, wrote to EU national leaders to lay out themes for discussion when they meet in Malta on Friday to discuss the future of their Union as Britain prepares to leave.

He warned that Trump's bellicose pronouncements and controversial stands on migration, trade and terrorism were a potentiual thret to Europe.

In his letter Tusk wrote that those factors and “worrying declarations by the new American administration all make our future highly unpredictable.” He appeared to question whether the United States would maintain its commitment to European security under Trump’s leadership.

In vivid language that reflects deep concern in Europe at the new US president's support for Brexit, as well as his ban on refugees and people from several Muslim countries, Tusk called on Europeans to rally against eurosceptic nationalists at home and take "spectacular steps" to deepen the continent's integration.

Saying the EU faced the biggest challenges of its 60-year history, Tusk named an "assertive China," "Russia's aggressive policy" toward its neighbors, and "radical Islam" fueling anarchy in the Middle East and Africa as key external threats.

These, "as well as worrying declarations by the new American administration, all make our future highly unpredictable," he said.

Laying out issues leaders may address in a 60th anniversary declaration at Rome in March, Tusk said the EU unity built after World War Two and the Cold War was needed "to avoid another historic catastrophe". He also said Americans should not weaken Transatlantic ties fundamental to "global order and peace"."The disintegration of the European Union will not lead to the restoration of some mythical, full sovereignty of its member states, but to their real and factual dependence on the great superpowers: the United States, Russia and China," Tusk wrote to the EU leaders. "Only together can we be fully independent."