Mike Pompeo Cancels Meeting With German Chancellor At The Last Minute
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has cancelled a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the last minute, citing ‘pressing issues’. This is a highly unusual move on Pompeo’s part and will no doubt cause speculation at home and abroad.
Pompeo planned to visit Berlin Tuesday but cancelled the trip early this morning. The US embassy in Berlin issued a statement from a State Department official briefly explaining the decision, but it offered little in the way of details.
“Unfortunately, we must reschedule the Berlin meetings due to pressing issues. We look forward to rescheduling this important set of meetings. The Secretary looks forward to being in Berlin soon,” the statement said.
It is unclear what those pressing issues might be. Germany is the leading nation in the European Union and a key US ally, as well as being a major trading partner. As one of the world’s leading economies, German-US relations are of major importance.
Cancelling a meeting with Merkel could be seen as a snub, though this will depend on what the Trump administration cites as the reason. President Donald Trump has long been critical of Merkel and the EU more generally, even starting a trade war with the bloc.
Speculation about the cancelled trip will no doubt feature in news in the US and abroad. On Monday, there were indications that the Trump administration was ratcheting up its rhetoric on Iran, possibly even contemplating military strikes. Germany and the EU have continued to honor the agreement signed between Iran and the Obama administration, which Trump pulled out of.