Merkel supported the creation of a unified armed forces of the EU

15 Novembre, 2018, 18:57 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Reuters  Francois Mori

The German Chancellor proposed the creation of a European Security Council with a rotating presidency, something she first suggested last summer but which failed to gain traction.

The French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have been working together to lead the free world in the absence of the United States from the world stage.

Sketching out the government's AI strategy, Merkel's chief of staff said last week the plan would focus on how to gather more data, support research, retain skilled workers and encourage them to found start-ups.

As stressed by the German Chancellor, the European army must ensure the impossibility of waging war on the European continent.

As several European lawmakers booed her, Merkel stressed that the EU army was not an alternative to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, the West's main defense alliance.

But the real bombshell moment came when Mrs Merkel backed calls by Emmanuel Macron for a "real European army". It's a long-term goal, but one Merkel said will show the world "that there will never again be war between European nations".

Mrs Merkel's intervention comes as apparent dig at US President Donald Trump, who branded Mr Macron's suggestion "very insulting".

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Merkel's renewed calls for such a force, which were an endorsement of Macron's statements to that effect over the weekend, were met with a mingling of loud applause and boos at a meeting of the European Parliament, German daily Die Welt reported.

"Europe must take our fate into our own hands if we want to protect our community", she added.

In five posts - sent on the same day that French officials marked the anniversary of the 2015 terrorist attacks that killed 130 people in Paris - Mr Trump attacked the key USA ally over its near defeat to Germany in two world wars, its wine industry and Mr Macron's approval ratings.

France wants German support to establish a European system ensuring that governments could access, in an emergency situation, a fund created to prevent catastrophic national bankruptcies of the kind Greece faced earlier this decade, and that European banks will be supported, in order to prevent a meltdown of the continent's financial system.

One political analyst said Merkel's call for a European army is a bold long-term vision - "but let's acknowledge that it's long-term". "A European army should be set up within the European Union and not outside of it".

Merkel dominated European politics for over a decade, but she is now a diminished force, weakened by the fragility of her coalition and the rise of the far-right in Germany.

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