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Wednesday, 11 January 2017 19:05

France's Macron expects Trump to maintain close ties to Europe

Written by  Reuters

BERLIN French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron said he was sure the United States under President Donald Trump would maintain close ties with the European Union but said Europe would respond if Trump acted to weaken NATO.

Trump has called for better relations between the United States and Russia and during the presidential election campaign rattled U.S. allies, especially in eastern Europe, by saying he would consider a country's contributions to the NATO alliance before coming to their aid.

French opinion polls show Macron, who is running as an independent in the April-May presidential election in France, is gaining on the frontrunners, conservative candidate Francois Fillon and far-right leader Marine Le Pen.

"I want to at least give the new U.S. president a chance, but the signals from Trump up to now have been going in another direction. He doesn’t rule out the dismantling of NATO," Macron told Germany's Funke Mediengruppe newspaper chain in an interview published on Thursday.

"I'm convinced it's in America's interest to cooperate with the EU. We have common values and similarly structured economies. I doubt that Trump would defend U.S. interests without working with the EU or dealing with climate change," he said."

Asked about Trump's comments on NATO, Macron said: "We would react if it came to that (weakening of the alliance).

Read more at Reuters

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