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Angela Merkel tells Europe to make it on its own

May 31st, 2017

Commentators ponder what a more independent and assertive Europe, as envisioned by Chancellor Merkel, might entail for Hungary.

In Népszava, Tamás Rónay thinks that Angela Merkel’s suggestion that Europe must take its fate into its own hands rather than relying on the US and the UK, marks a turning point in European politics. The left-wing columnist blames US President Trump for reneging on common EU-US values including climate policy. Rónay suspects that Chancellor Merkel will become an increasingly important actor on the global political scene. This, Rónay speculates, will compel the Hungarian government to revise its stance concerning Germany and the EU, unless it wants to make Hungary a marginalized country in the new geopolitical setting.

Magyar Idők’s Levente Sitkei welcomes the German Chancellor’s admission that Europe cannot rely on the US and UK to achieve its own objectives. The pro-government commentator thinks that the EU needs to establish stronger ties with Russia and China as its reliance on the US and the UK become looser. Sitkei interprets Angela Merkel’s statement as an admission that European interests may require leaders to oppose US policy. He regrets that Mrs Merkel only realised this this week. Had she done so a few years ago, perhaps Hungary would not have been vilified by the German press for protecting its borders from ‘mass illegal migration’ he suggests.

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