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EU Must Not Appear as Appendage of U.S.: German Politician

A senior politician of Germany’s governing Social Democratic Party (SPD) on Wednesday welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron’s call for the European Union (EU) to become more independent from the United States.

Regarding the Taiwan question, Europe “must indeed try to formulate an independent role if possible and not appear as an appendage of the United States in the region,” Rolf Muetzenich, parliamentary group leader of Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s SPD, told public broadcaster ARD.

Europe’s weight in Asia, however, is limited, according to Muetzenich. “We are second, maybe even third-tier important in this region,” he said, stressing that a “differentiated view” is better than “always only talking about which side you attach yourself to.”

Germany’s Left Party also supported the French president’s idea of greater strategic independence of Europe. It is a “worthwhile goal if it is combined with the objective of becoming the world’s peace power,” Left Party politician Dietmar Bartsch said.

Europe must reduce its dependency on the United States, Macron said last week. Europe had increased its dependency on the United States for weapons and energy and must now focus on boosting European defense industries, Macron told journalists from the U.S.-based POLITICO news service and French newspaper Les Echos.

Macron emphasized the importance of “European sovereignty” on Tuesday during a state visit to the Netherlands. Delivering a speech at the Amare Theater in The Hague, Macron stressed that the concept of European sovereignty is “extremely important.” 

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