‘You are a monument’: EU leaders hail Angela Merkel at ‘final’ summit

11 months ago 166

After astir 16 years and 107 EU summits, Angela Merkel, the outgoing chancellor of Germany, mightiness person expected much from her chap leaders than a solid paperweight and praise for being a “monument”.

But astatine what was expected to be Merkel’s last gathering successful Brussels, touching connected issues ranging from vigor prices to Poland’s laissez faire cognition to EU law, the erstwhile US president Barack Obama astatine slightest offered a small glamour to proceedings successful a astonishment quality successful a farewell video.

“Thanks to you, the centre has held done galore storms,” Obama said successful the video aired successful the acme country successful the egg-shaped Europa gathering successful Brussels. “So galore people, girls and boys, men and women, person had a relation exemplary who they could look up to done challenging times. I cognize due to the fact that I americium 1 of them. Danke schon.”

 Obama pays tribute to Angela Merkel – video

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'A relation model': Obama pays tribute to Angela Merkel – video

Despite her well-known disapproval of a fuss, Merkel was subsequently fixed a lasting ovation astatine the extremity of the two-day gathering by her peers. She was besides presented with a solid paperweight reproduction of the Europa gathering successful which she has spent truthful galore precocious nights and aboriginal mornings.

When Merkel attended her archetypal EU acme successful December 2005, her chap leaders included Tony Blair. Earlier this week, Merkel, the EU’s occupation fixer, had spoken of her heavy wounded implicit Brexit.

At a post-summit property league connected Friday, she warned her peers that the bloc, rocked precocious by the Polish government’s claim of being treated arsenic a state successful narration to antagonistic rulings astir changes to its judiciary, needed to wrestle with a cardinal question.

“There is the contented of the independency of justice, but besides underlying [the question] ... which mode is the European Union heading, what should beryllium a European competence and what should beryllium tackled by federation states?” she said. “If you look astatine Polish history, it is precise understandable that the question of defining their nationalist individuality plays a large relation … which is simply a antithetic humanities concern than the 1 countries find themselves successful that person had ideology since satellite warfare two.”

The comments reflected Merkel’s relation passim her tenure arsenic a seeker of compromise.

In an code to her and the different 26 EU heads of authorities and government, the European assembly president, Charles Michel, offered his ain idiosyncratic reflections.

“Your benignant is your coolness,” helium said. “You are a monument.” EU summits, Michel said, “without Angela is similar Rome without the Vatican oregon Paris without the Eiffel tower”.

The erstwhile Belgian premier curate was afloat of praise for her “extreme sobriety and simplicity”. He added: “This is simply a precise almighty seduction weapon.”

“I retrieve our archetypal encounter,” Michel said. “You were conscionable precise funny successful proceeding maine explicate the details of our conjugation statement and the complexity of the Belgian institutions.”

Merkel’s acme quality was besides marked by a peculiar “family photo” of the assembled heads of authorities and government. It will, however, lone beryllium to beryllium her past if talks implicit the constitution of the next German government carnivore effect earlier the adjacent scheduled gathering connected 16 December.