Will down­grade prompt EU to come out of US shad­ows?

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - VIEWS - Chen Wei­hua The au­thor is chief of China Daily EU Bureau based in Brus­sels. chen­wei­[email protected]­nadaily.com.cn

Euro­pean Union of­fi­cials and politi­cians have been out­raged since learn­ing the US State Depart­ment qui­etly down­graded the EU’s sta­tus from a state to an in­ter­na­tional or­ga­ni­za­tion at least six weeks ago.

It all hap­pened when EU Ambassador to the US David O’Sullivan, usu­ally among the first 30 for­eign en­voys to be seated, watched as he was among the last to be called at the fu­neral of for­mer US pres­i­dent Ge­orge H.W. Bush in early De­cem­ber.

Brus­sels feels “big brother” has hu­mil­i­ated, even be­trayed it. While some EU politi­cians are ap­peal­ing Wash­ing­ton to re­solve the is­sue, the cur­rent episode is just a bit­ter re­minder that dis­agree­ments be­tween the two transat­lantic al­lies are many and grow­ing fast.

The EU has op­posed many ma­jor ac­tions taken by the United States ad­min­is­tra­tion in the last two years. These in­clude the US with­drawal from the land­mark Paris cli­mate ac­cord, the Iran nu­clear deal, and its de­ci­sion to pull out of the In­ter­me­di­ate-Range Nu­clear Forces Treaty, as well as its recog­ni­tion of Jerusalem as the cap­i­tal of Is­rael.

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