US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks on the rostrum on the 56th Munich Safety Convention (MSC) in Munich, southern Germany, on February 15, 2020. Christof STACHE / AFP
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday rejected European pessimism about Washington’s retreat from the worldwide stage, saying the demise of the transatlantic bond is “grossly overexaggerated”.
“The West is profitable and we’re profitable collectively,” Pompeo mentioned on the Munich Safety Convention.
The annual gathering of world leaders, generals and diplomats to debate safety challenges has been dominated by fears of diminishing Western affect within the face of a extra assertive China and Russia.
Pompeo spoke a day after German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier urged america rejected “even the concept of a global group” and was performing “on the expense of neighbours and companions”.
“These statements don’t replicate actuality. I’m completely satisfied to report that the demise of the transatlantic alliance is grossly over-exaggerated,” Pompeo mentioned, paraphrasing a well-known Mark Twain quote.
He mentioned Washington performed a key position in conserving Europe protected by reinforcing NATO’s japanese flank on the border with Russia, and had led a multinational effort to defeat the Islamic State jihadist group.
“Is that this an America that ‘rejects the worldwide group’?” he requested.
“The free West has a brighter future than intolerant options.”
He additionally warned of the threats posed by Russia’s territorial ambitions, China’s army buildup within the South China Sea and Iran’s “campaigns of terror” by means of proxy conflicts within the Center East.
In a nod to issues about European reliance on Russian pure gasoline, Pompeo additionally introduced that the US would finance power initiatives in japanese EU international locations.
“America –- by means of our Worldwide Improvement Finance Company, and with the help of the US Congress -– intends to offer as much as $1 billion in financing to the Central and Japanese European international locations of the Three Seas Initiative,” Pompeo instructed the convention.
“Our purpose is to galvanise non-public sector funding of their power sectors.”
The pledge comes amid fierce US opposition to Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline, set to double the nation’s gasoline shipments to Germany.
Washington believes the pipeline will give Russia an excessive amount of affect over safety and financial points in western Europe.