Angela Merkel calls for German-led EU ARMY to defend Europe. "UK and USA are WEAK"
The Berlin chief said Brussels will have to take on “more responsibility in the world” as she predicted a cooling in trans-Atlantic ties under the eurosceptic President-elect.
And describing Brexit as “emotional” for her she urged the remaining 27 member states to use Britain’s decision to leave to railroad through ever closer military cooperation.
Mrs Merkel made the remarks as she picked up honorary degrees from two Belgian universities which were awarded in recognition of her work towards a 'unified Europe'.
They come as eurocrats continue to press forward with plans for much closer European cooperation on military matters - a so-called ‘Defence Union’ - which is seen by most observers as the back-door creation of an EU army.
EU chiefs were recently forced to drop controversial plans for a joint military headquarters in Brussels after Britain pledged to veto them, but Mrs Merkel hinted they will be back on the table immediately after Brexit.
Concerns have been raised that an EU army will fatally undermine NATO - the western military alliance which has kept peace on the continent for 50 years - by creating a competing command structure.
But Mrs Merkel insisted such a force will need to come into being in part because of the indifference of Mr Trump, who takes office on January 21, towards the entire euro project.