Fears Donald Trump could boost Hungary's far-right leader on Europe trip

President was accused of acting like a ‘drunk tourist’ on his last trip

Loulla-Mae Eleftheriou-Smith
Wednesday 05 July 2017 17:34
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Donald Trump claims his first foreign trip has been a success. His body language tells otherwise

A former European senior official has reportedly voiced fears that Donald Trump's trip to Europe could boost far-right politicians on the continent.

Mr Trump has today started his second European visit as the President of the United States, travelling first to Poland before heading to the Germany for the G20 summit.

Poland’s government, led by the right-wing, Eurosceptic Law and Justice Party, has been more welcoming to the President than some European leaders.

Mr Trump will also make an appearance at the summit for the Three Seas Initiative in Wroclaw while in Poland. The initiative is a joint Polish-Croatian project launched last year that aims to strengthen trade, infrastructure, energy and political co-operation between 12 countries that border the Adriatic, the Baltic and the Black Sea.

One former senior official from one of the Three Seas Initiative member states told Politico they feared Mr Trump’s visit to Poland would give the country’s leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski and his far-right counterpart in Hungary, Viktor Orban, a “boost”.

“I worry he might give Kaczynski and Orban a boost, a bad reprise of [former American Defense Secretary Donald] Rumsfeld’s ‘old’ vs ‘new’ Europe, but this time not because we were supportive of the US on the war on terror but because those two are nativist Euroskeptics,” the unnamed source told the website.

The unnamed official referenced the strategy used by Mr Rumsfeld under former President George Bush, who divided the continent into “Old Europe”, referring to the western states, and “New Europe,” meaning the eastern countries.

The President’s behaviour was a focus of his last trip to Europe and the Middle East, where one unnamed US State Department official claimed he acted like a “drunk tourist”.

“When it comes to diplomacy, President Trump is a drunk tourist,” the official told The Daily Beast at the time. “Loud and tacky, shoving his way around the dance floor. He steps on others without realising it. It’s ineffectual.”

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