The president of the European Council has launched a thinly-veiled attack on Donald Trump’s approach to international relations, accusing the US president of “transatlantic bickering” in the face of apparent Russian aggression.
In a Wednesday afternoon tweet in which he did not explicitly name the US president, Donald Tusk said that the requirement for “transatlantic unity” should be “obvious” for Europe’s “real friends” after the US president pushed forward with tariffs on European steel and aluminium.
Mr Tusk cited the use of a nerve agent on European soil, the spread of state-sponsored fake news, and the meddling in elections as reasons for a coordinated response from the US and EU.
The intervention comes a day after the deputy president of the European Commission Frans Timmermans called for “solidarity” from European countries to the British government and people in the face of the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Sailsbury.
The response from Mr Trump’s White House has been more equivocal. The US president said yesterday that he “will condemn Russia or whoever it may be” once the facts had been established.
“For real friends, this should be obvious: At a time of fake news spreading, meddling in our elections, and attacks on people on our soil with nerve agent, the response must not be transatlantic bickering but transatlantic unity,” Mr Tusk said.