US informs Europe:  “We don’t feel the need to profess love”

President Barack Obama listens during a meeting with Spain

From Daniel Dombey, the Financial Times:  The US and the European Union may hold a summit in Lisbon in November, to make up for President Barack Obama’s decision not to attend such a meeting in Spain earlier this year.

But the proposed Lisbon meeting – which would be tacked on to a Nato summit in the Portuguese capital – might not be enough to convince Brussels of Mr Obama’s enthusiasm for the EU. …

“Not being a problem does not mean we should not be a priority,” said João Vale de Almeida, who this week became the EU’s ambassador to Washington. “There’s untapped potential in this relationship … We can co-operate better on foreign policy, from Iran to Pakistan, to the Middle East and the Balkans. …”

Washington also signalled that European leaders should not have excessive expectations of personal contact with Mr Obama. “This president is not a schmoozer – he doesn’t hang out,” said a senior administration official. “We don’t feel the need to profess love because it’s a fact of life that Europe is our main partner, in everything that we do in the world … Do you need to say that all the time?” 

Describing the proposed meeting in Lisbon in November as a “legitimate candidate” for a possible EU-US summit together with other possibilities, the US official cautions that “there needs to be enough substance that it is worthy of our leaders meeting and I very much hope that that will be the case.”  (photo: Reuters)

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