EU's Tusk asks: 'With friends like Trump, who needs enemies?'


EU president Donald Tusk urged leaders meeting in Bulgaria to form a "united European front" against Trump's withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear deal and his move to impose trade tariffs on Europe.

Mr Trump's decision to walk away from the landmark nuclear deal with Iran - to which the UK, France, Germany, Russia and China are co-signatories - is being linked by the European Union with the U.S. administration's refusal to exempt the bloc from steel and aluminium tariffs.

Macron, May and Merkel in Sofia on May 17.

"The EU will continue fighting for a rules-based worldwide system despite recent decisions on climate change, tariffs and Iran", the source said after the leaders met over dinner in Sofia. Meanwhile the European Union is still trying to win exemptions from tariffs on steel and aluminium exports. "No one can tell right now if that will work, but we'll do our best". "The condition for all talks is to lift all threats and tariffs, without mention of a time limit". Most EU countries are US allies in the world's biggest security organization, NATO.

The European Union's top official launched a stinging attack Wednesday on President Donald Trump, slamming his "capricious assertiveness" and saying the U.S. leader acted more like an enemy than a friend.

"Looking at latest decisions of [Trump] someone could even think: with friends like that who needs enemies", wrote Donald Tusk, president of the European Council. The bloc would also discuss WTO-compatible ways to improve reciprocal market access for industrial products including cars to avoid a trade war. During a speech on Wednesday to the German Parliament, she also said it would be wrong to cancel the nuclear agreement with Iran and called the decision to pull out of the accord "troubling news". But Europeans are increasingly exasperated by the way Trump is steering USA policy, objecting not only to his stances but also to what they say is erratic policy making that switches on the whim of Fox News programmers.

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President Donald Trump announced last week that the United States would abandon the landmark 2015 accord despite the European powers' sustained efforts to convince Washington to continue to adhere to the deal.

White House National Security Adviser John Bolton indicated on Sunday that the US would be willing to impose sanctions on any European companies that continue to work or do business with Iran.

"Trump played his first card, but miscalculated the second move", Rouhani was quoted as saying by the ISNA agency.

"Which company is going to risk access to the US market, which is 100 times larger", Ardavan Amir-Alsani, a Paris-based lawyer who specializes in Iran, said in an interview. But U.S. clout in worldwide trade and finance limits their scope for action.

'I want leaders to reconfirm that the European Union sticks to the deal as long as Iran does.