Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst The strain now being placed on the historic relationship between the western European states and the U.S was highlighted by the former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson who was USA secretary of state before being fired over Twitter by President Trump.
Trump angered his country's European allies with his decision to pull the United States out of an worldwide nuclear deal with Iran. But Europe appeared to stand its ground this time.
The EU wants to salvage the Iran nuclear deal, which offers the Islamic Republic relief from economic sanctions in exchange for curbs on its nuclear programme and Europe sees as an important element of global security.More news: Instagram finally realized Feed and Stories are part of the same app
On Wednesday, asserting Europe's growing readiness to distance itself from its transatlantic ally, Tusk launched a stinging criticism of the USA president, saying that "with friends like that, who needs enemies". "It's not a joke now", Tusk told a news conference. I think the real geopolitical problem is when you have not an unpredictable opponent, the problem is when your closest friend is unpredictable. "It's not a joke, this is the essence of our problem today on the other side of the Atlantic". Eventually, European countries may have to make a choice between their ally who emphasizes "America First" and the interests of their own companies. "Russia also becomes a source, and if Russian Federation can upset the USA, they will do it".
French President Emmanuel Macron said Thursday that one reason for the efforts to prop up the Iran deal is "so that our businesses can remain" in Iran.
The Commission will now seek to negotiate a permanent exemption from USA tariffs. The bloc would also discuss WTO-compatible ways to improve reciprocal market access for industrial products including cars to avoid a trade war.More news: LHC dismisses treason pleas submitted by opposition against Nawaz Sharif
The proposed European Union actions are no guarantee that the accord can be salvaged, however, with the US Treasury Department saying companies with existing contracts will have 90 to 180 days to extract themselves from their Iran dealings before becoming subject to penalties.
Georgi Gotev contributed to this article.More news: Mohamed Salah boots to be displayed in British Museum