Trump helped Europe lose its illusions - Tusk

Trump helped Europe lose its illusions - Tusk

Tusk's comments come amid increasingly souring relations between the European Union and US, over trade disagreements, the Iran nuclear deal, and the US Embassy's relocation to Jerusalem. "We want a permanent exemption and then we are ready to talk how we can reciprocally reduce the barriers to trade", Merkel told reporters before a summit of European Union leaders in Bulgarian capital Sofia. "No one will choose Iran over the U.S. The deal is dead".

Total said it might quit a multi-billion-dollar gas project if it could not secure a waiver from US sanctions.

Members of the European Council will discuss ways they might be able to salvage the Iran nuclear deal now that President Trump has opted to back out of the agreement during their summit in Bulgaria this week.

Danish oil product shipping operator Maersk Tankers said it would wind down its customer agreements in Iran by November, while German insurer Allianz said on Tuesday it was preparing to wind down Iran-related business.

"The EU will continue fighting for a rules-based global system despite recent decisions on climate change, tariffs and Iran", the source said after the leaders met over dinner in Sofia. The last time the bloc threatened to use this measure was in 1996, when Bill Clinton's administration stood down and agreed to waive sanctions aimed at curbing foreign investment in Cuba, Iran and Libya.

President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker also remarked last week that the European Union should replace the United States as a global leader after the latter "as an worldwide actor has lost vigor, and because of it, in the long term, influence".

In order to protect European Union companies from USA extraterritorial sanctions, they agreed to modernise the so-called blocking statute, a 1996 regulation that prevents companies to recognise certain non-EU jurisdictions decisions.

The EU is hoping that Iran abide by the agreement as long Tehran receives the economic benefits promised in the deal.

Trump helped Europe lose its illusions - Tusk

"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.

While European officials have spoken out against Trump's trade actions before, the language used by Tusk marks a new tone in the relationship.

Major European countries share Trump's concerns but argue that the nuclear deal is the best way to stop the increasingly influential regional power from obtaining an atomic weapon.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel echoed his remarks.

"We all pull together here", Kurz said.

Prime Minister Rutte agrees with that, he said to NOS.

Meanwhile, Iranian President Hassan Rohani said on May 16 that Tehran will not bow to US pressure. Writing on Twitter, he said Trump's recent actions have eliminated any "illusions" of collaboration between the continent and the U.S. "The Iranian nation will resist the USA plots", Iranian news agencies quoted Rohani as saying.

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