Tuesday

21st Nov 2017

Trump and Macron turn on the charm

  • Trump went to France to mark a national holiday and a WWI anniversary (Photo: The White House)

US leader Donald Trump and France’s Emmanuel Macron made a show of friendship in Paris on Thursday (13 July).

Trump said he might soften his climate policy and spoke less harshly than usual against free trade.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • Trump in France after trip to Poland and to G20 in Germany last week (Photo: The White House)

He said “something could happen with respect to the Paris Accord. We'll see what happens. But we will talk about that over the coming period of time”.

He also said “the United States remains committed to being a leader in environmental protection”.

The US president said last month that America, the world’s second biggest polluter, would pull out of the Paris agreement, which aims to limit global warming, and has promised to champion US fossil fuels firms.

He has also promised to put “America first” on trade, but he said on Thursday: “We must … confront unfair trade practices that hurt our workers, and pursue trade deals that are reciprocal and fair”.

He spoke on a visit to mark the French national day and to commemorate the 100th anniversary of US intervention in World War I.

The state pomp was matched by personal gestures.

Trump said to Macron: “The friendship between our two nations - and ourselves, I might add - is unbreakable”.

The two men exchanged smiles and pats on the arm, in contrast to their first meeting, in June, when they had a handshake tug-of-war.

Trump had, in the past, denigrated Paris as a terrorist risk, but he said on Thursday it was “one of the great cities, one of the most beautiful cities in the world”.

He said “You [the French people] have a tough president [Macron] … You’re going to have a very, very peaceful and beautiful Paris”.

Macron said there was still “disagreement” on climate and no breakthrough on commerce, but he said that he and Trump saw eye to eye on the importance of “fair, free trade”.

“It will … give me great pleasure to have dinner together with you tonight”, Macron added, on a day of official engagements also with his wife and with the US first lady.

Trump, earlier the same day, even told Macron's wife that she was "in such good shape ... beautiful".

They also talked about Libya, Iraq, Syria, Russia, and Ukraine.

Trump has been dogged by accusations that he colluded with Russia to beat Hillary Clinton in last year’s US elections.

He defended his son’s decision to meet a Russian lawyer to get compromising material on Clinton by saying it was “standard” practice in politics.

“Politics is not the nicest business in the world”, Trump said in Paris on Thursday.

Russia deals

He said that he and Russia were working “on a second ceasefire in a very rough part of Syria”.

He told press earlier, while flying to Paris, that he might do a “deal” with Russia on Ukraine and US sanctions in future.

“I would never take the sanctions off until something is worked out to our satisfaction and everybody’s satisfaction in Syria and in Ukraine. I’ve made great deals. That’s what I do. Why would I take sanctions off without getting anything?”, Trump said.

He also said he might invite Russian leader Vladimir Putin to the White House, but he added: “I don't think this is the right time”.

Macron told media: “We have a lot of discrepancies, obviously, with Russia, but in the current environment, especially in the Middle East, it's a necessity to work together”.

“It’s important that both of us [Trump and Macron] have direct discussion and contact with president Putin,” he added.

Opinion

Macron goes east to test appetite for EU integration

The next few months will be decisive in selecting who stays in the core of the EU and who stays behind, writes Tomas Prouza, a former state secretary for European Affairs of the Czech Republic.

MEPs ponder how to fight tax havens

After the Paradise Papers brought new revelations about tax dodging across the globe, including in the EU, the European Parliament wonders how to step up the fight.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. ILGA EuropeFreedom of Movement For All Families? Same Sex Couple Ask EU Court for Recognition
  2. EPSUWith EU Pillar of Social Rights in Place, Time Is Ticking for Commission to Deliver
  3. ILGA EuropeBan on LGBTI Events in Ankara Must Be Overturned
  4. Bio-Based IndustriesBio-Based Industries: European Growth is in Our Nature!
  5. Dialogue PlatformErdogan's Most Vulnerable Victims: Women and Children
  6. UNICEFEuropean Parliament Marks World Children's Day by Launching Dialogue With Children
  7. European Jewish CongressAntisemitism in Europe Today: Is It Still a Threat to Free and Open Society?
  8. Counter BalanceNew Report: Juncker Plan Backs Billions in Fossil Fuels and Carbon-Heavy Infrastructure
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic countries prioritise fossil fuel subsidy reform
  10. Mission of China to the EUNew era for China brings new opportunities to all
  11. ACCASmall and Medium Sized Practices Must 'Offer the Whole Package'
  12. UNICEFAhead of the African Union - EU Summit, Survey Highlights Impact of Conflict on Education