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Brexit is wake-up call in shifting geopolitics, says Merkel

Published by The Nation on Thu, 16 Jan 2020

German Chancellor Angela Merkel called Brexit a wake-up call in a newspaper interview published on Thursday, as she addressed threats to the multilateralist approach that has defined her time in office.I see the European Union (EU) as our life insurance.Germany is far too small to exert geopolitical influence on its own, and thats why we need to make use of all the benefits of the single market, Merkel told Britains Financial Times.The long-serving chancellor, who is set to exit politics next year, stressed that supranational institutions like the EU and UN were essentially a lesson learnt from the second world war, and the preceding decades.The EU and UN have come under fire in recent years, as well as the NATO defense alliance, not least from U.S. President Donald Trump.Merkel conceded that reform was necessary in these institutions.There is no doubt whatsoever about any of that.Read AlsoUK lawmakers back EU Brexit dealBut I do not call the worlds multilateral structure into question, she said.The Christian Democrat called on the EU to become attractive, innovative, creative (and) a good place for research and education in response to Brexit, speaking ahead of Britains departure from the bloc on January 31. Competition can then be very productive.Addressing Germanys cooling relations with the U.S., Merkel argued that this was structural and not necessarily down to Trumps presidency.The United States focus on Europe is decliningthat will be the case under any president, she said, arguing that Germany, in particular, should take on more responsibility to counter the shift. (dpa/NAN)
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