Berlin (AFP) – France and Germany leaders meet in Berlin on Sunday to jointly remember the victims of European war…
Berlin (AFP) – France and Germany leaders meet in Berlin on Sunday to jointly remember the victims of European war and present a common front to counter the global concern that US President Donald Trump made.
Macron and Merkel are both committed pro-Europeans and internationalists who have resisted rising populist, eurosceptic and anti-immigration forces in Europe and Trump’s isolationist “America First” retention.
During their second meeting for a week, the couple is likely to dive deeper into the idea of a future European army, a proposal that has raised Trump’s hackles.
As the world recalls the World War, which ended centuries ago, Macron has repeatedly asserted me the fear of pushing home his message that rising nationalism around the world once again destabilizes the world.
He has proposed to build a future European army as a symbol of a united continent.
The proposal has been backed by Merkel, although Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on Friday that France and Germany jumped the gun and argued that the continent’s security could only be guaranteed through NATO.
On Tuesday, the United States leaders pushed both European powers by tweeting that “Germany was the World War One & Two – How did it work for France?” And added that “they began to learn German in Paris before the United States arrived” .
– Weakened Leaders –
One week after the world leaders participated in the military centennies in Paris, Merkel and Macron will also meet again one-on-one to resume their dialogue on ways to increase the EU.
Since their joint cabinet meeting on Europe in June, challenges have arisen, with Brexit close and a budget conflict that escalates between Brussels and Italy.  The conversation also comes in a time when both leaders are politically weakened, reducing the French-German engine’s traditional driving force in the heart of the block.
As Trump smoothly tweeted days ago, Macron’s single approval classes have fallen
and Merkel, after 13 years of power, has announced the beginning of her reign in recent weeks by not continuing to be the leader of her center right Christian Democrats (CDU).
She is required to earn her fourth term, which runs until 2021, but many observers expect Merkel to be brought down earlier by fighting in her CDU or the unfortunate tripartite coalition she leads.
All this has made even more significant reform initiatives of French-German power pairs.
There is already much frustration in Paris about Merkel’s perceptions of Macron’s bold reform plans, especially forging a eurozone with a large joint budget and finance minister.
– Difficult Issues –
The Common Army Plan is faced with difficult issues, including post-war Germany’s traditional reluctance to send fighting forces abroad and the fact that it is Parliament that has to approve military missions.
The next major political test for both Macron and Merkel will be a European parliamentary elections in May, when their centrist parties will fight with populist and right-wing right forces.
Macron’s trip to Berlin, he first sees Prince Frank-Walter Steinmeier at 11.00 (1000 GMT) at the Youth for Peace event, where young people will present “100 Ideas for Peace”.
From 1130 GMT, Macron, Steinmeier and Merkel will attend the Neue Wache ceremony, a neoclassical former Prussian military guardhouse serving as Germany’s central memorial to the victim of war and dictation.
At 1230 GMT, Macron delivers a speech in the Parliamentary Chamber of the Covenant Parliament, which is located in the historic Parliament building that still carries ears of World War II.
When Macron again meets Merkel at the office of 1410 GMT, they will leave statements to the media but not give a joint press conference.