Official: Europe must do more for its defense, depends on US

BERLIN (AP) — German Minister of Defense Tuesday said that even though it aims to guarantee that the USA stays in the interests of stability in Europe, Europe must do something to defend itself.

In a German military university in Hamburg, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer said that Europe must embrace the paradox that it remains safe based upon the USA, even though it needs to do something to stand on its legs.

"The idea of the strategic autumn of Europe goes too far if it gives the illusion that without NATO and without the USA in Europe we can secure security, stability and prosperity," she said.

In recent years the United States has fuelled concerns regarding the prospects of Europe's dependency on the US since World War II.

President Donald Trump sharply criticised some of the continent's NATO nations, in particular Germany, for their low military expenditures.

French President Emmanuel Macron has lately highlighted the need to make use of the change in government in the USA as an incentive to achieve, and not to backtrack Europe's geopolitical freedom.

"Only if we are serious and if we are sovereign in our defence, shall we be respected as allies by the United States," Macron said to Le Grand Continent.

It is necessary for Europe to be willing, for example in Africa and regardless of the US to perform military operations, Mr Kramp-Karrenbauer said.

"It's something quite different to believing that a European Army can substitute America and keep America completely outside Europe, however it's composed or established," she said.