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EU leaders united as Trump overshadows summit

03 February 2017, 22:26 CET
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EU leaders united as Trump overshadows summit

Valletta summit - Photo EU Council

(VALLETTA) - EU leaders ended a summit in Malta Friday calling for unity, strength and confidence in facing difficult global challenges including the behaviour of the new U.S. administration.

The leaders of the 28 Member States were in Malta - which currently holds the EU presidency - to discuss Europe's response to the new Trump administration, as well as migration issues, and the future of Europe after Brexit.

During a working lunch discussion centred on the future of the transatlantic partnership, leaders expressed concern on some of the positions taken by the new U.S. administration. Maltese prime minister Joseph Muscat voiced particular concern at "some attitudes being adopted by the administration".

This in no way reflected a sense of anti-Americanism, stressed Mr Muscat at a press conference following the summit. The EU needs to engage with the United States just the same, he said, but "we cannot stay silent where there are principles involved. And as in any good relationship, we will speak very clearly where we think that those principles are being trampled on."

The summit also debated the external dimension of migration. They adopted the Malta Declaration, which focuses on measures to stem the flow of migration from Libya to Italy.

"We also sent a message that one can tackle migration from a level-headed point of view". said Mr Muscat.

In the declaration they noted that on the Central Mediterranean route over 181,000 irregular migrants arrived in 2016, and the number of persons dead or missing at sea reached a new record every year since 2013.

With spring approaching, leaders decided to take additional action to significantly reduce migratory flows, break the business model of smugglers and save lives. In particular, they agreed to step up cooperation with the Libyan authorities.

The EU confirmed its support for the Presidency Council and the Government of National Accord backed by the United Nations. They also declared readiness to cooperate with Libyan regional and local communities as well as international organisations active in the country.

The EU will train, equip and support Libyan coastguards to stop people smugglers and increase search and rescue operations. They will also deliver economic assistance to local communities in Libya to improve their situation and help them shelter strength with migrants.

Leaders emphasised the need to help reduce the pressure on Libya's land border by enhancing Libya's border management capacity and by working with neighbouring countries.

"We welcomed the Memorandum of Understanding signed yesterday by the Italian and Libyan Prime Ministers as another important and encouraging sign that things are about to change for the better", said President Donald Tusk at the press conference after the working session on migration. "The European Union and our actions will support Italy and Libya. It is our shared responsibility."

Finally, in the afternoon, the leaders discussed the future of the EU with 27 member states, as they looked forward to the upcoming 60th anniversary of the Rome Treaties on 25 March 2017.

Faced with global developments, Mr Tusk said Europe had no other option but "to regain confidence in its own strength".

He has called on the leaders to stay united: "It must be made crystal clear that 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. Only together can we be fully independent."

Malta Declaration by the members of the European Council on the external aspects of migration: addressing the Central Mediterranean route

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EU leaders united as Trump.....

Posted by Demir Arabaci at 04 February 2017, 21:49 CET

The latest from the Trump(f) camp is that he wants to re-negotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement - NAFTA as he feels that it was slanted for the benefit of Canada etc.

He is absolutely correct in his view of the NAFTA and how canada is ripping off it's bigger and better partner USA.

Nafta was basically a mick-to-mick free gift from a star gazing retarded mick (reagan) to an unpopular, flaundering and blundering and totally inept, bribe taking mick crook called brian baloney (or something like that) in Canada to boost his sagging political fortunes.

It did not work.

How could it when the beneficiary is a well known crook who took $300,000 bribe from a tax avading kraut crook to rule in favor of the airbus planes instead of the Boing planes which were superior in every way.

Just one example and it was the start.

In short, with the conditions of current NAFTA, USA has bent over backward to accomodate canada in every trade so far.

That is NOT free trade that is a One-way-benefits street for canada and trump(f) has every right to renegotiate for equal terms.

And nobody can blame him for looking after the American interests.

EU leaders united as Trump.....

Posted by LYN WICK at 09 February 2017, 00:24 CET
President Donald J Trump has the right through his mandate promise to his voters to put America First ,it is now what UK is correcting itself to do and every country should put their own country and its people before another . It does not mean we will not help each other ,or respect each other ------it is a two way benefit .Trade is trade and mutual for both countries ,tariffs can also go two ways ,think on .Political take over of another country is something else ,as is dictatorship . The only threat to the European Union is themselves and they have caused the problems of the last two years by allowing idiotic invasions 99% men of fighting age that hate all that the west stands for ,except the money of the west. Civil war will be next as the people will revolt to biased news /media and government .EU if they do not rectify their mistakes will be struggling to survive and I repeat the ones to blame is seen when they look in the mirror .