Merkel rejects Macron warning over Nato ‘brain death’

German chancellor hits back at French president’s attack on ‘lack of co-ordination’

Nov.7, 2019

French president Emmanuel Macron has opened a rift with Germany and other Nato allies weeks ahead of a vital summit after he warned that the transatlantic security alliance was suffering “brain death”.

German chancellor Angela Merkel rejected Mr Macron’s “sweeping blow” against the alliance, in which he strongly criticised a lack of strategic co-ordination between the US and other Nato allies over the invasion of Syria last month by Turkey, one of its members.

“The French president has chosen drastic words. That is not my view of co-operation inside Nato . . . even if we do have problems and even though we do have to get our act together,” Ms Merkel said. “From a German perspective, Nato is in our interest. It is our security alliance.”

Turkey’s Syria incursion, given the green light by US president Donald Trump without consultation with other allies, underscored deep tensions among Nato leaders, set to meet in the UK next month to celebrate the alliance’s 70th anniversary.