In what has been interpreted as European solidarity with the UK, the German ambassador to the USA has tweeted a picture of herself with ex-ambassador Kim Darroch and fellow diplomats.
The former UK ambassador to the USA was forced to quit his post after briefings critical of Trump were leaked.
The picture, tweeted by Emily Haber, shows her with Kim Darroch along with fellow ambassadors to the US, Stavros Lambrinidis representing the EU and Philippe Etienne for France. She added: “I’m honoured to host my colleagues and friends from the UK, France and the European Union for breakfast at my residence this morning.”
The seemingly innocuous tweet has widely been interpreted as an act of solidarity between EU countries towards Darroch, who resigned under pressure after Donald Trump reacted badly to the leak in which the ambassador confidentially described the president as “clumsy and inept”.
Trump took to Twitter to brand Darroch a “very stupid guy” who nobody likes, and went further to lay into Theresa May’s Brexit strategy.
From Germany's ambassador to the U.S.: this is being interpreted as a show of support for @KimDarroch here. If so, interesting argument for the debate that #Brexit would split UK from EU in foreign policy etc., and Britain would lose clout in Europe. https://t.co/TyiztuDryy— Bojan Pancevski (@bopanc) July 11, 2019
The situation for Darroch was worsened by the refusal of Boris Johnson, the likely next prime minister, to make any statement of support towards Darroch when asked during the Tory leadership debate.
Johnson condemned the leaking of Darroch’s emails, but stopped short of echoing his leadership rival, Jeremy Hunt, who had already tweeted in support of the ambassador.
Haber’s tweet has attracted attention in diplomatic circles and has been retweeted over 650 times. Carl Bildt, foreign relations co-chair at the European Council, retweeted it, adding: “I suspect Kim Darroch’s farewell reception in DC will be a distinctly crowded affair. Many will want to show their support.”
Washington Post diplomacy reporter John Hudson tweeted: “Germany’s ambassador to the U.S. sends a not-so-subtle message here,” while the Wall Street Journal’s Germany correspondent Bojan Pancevski said: “This is being interpreted as a show of support for Kim Darroch here. If so, interesting argument for the debate that Brexit would split UK from EU in foreign policy etc., and Britain would lose clout in Europe.”
The UK Green Party’s Natalie Bennett said simply: “European solidarity for Sir Kim Darroch. Better than he got from Boris Johnson. We should know who our friends are.”
Germany's ambassador to the U.S. sends a not-so-subtle message here, inviting Trump's enemy of the week, UK ambassador Kim Darroch, to breakfast alongside the French and European Union's top diplomats and tweeting out the photo: "My colleagues and friends" https://t.co/AhkpxCPEyU— John Hudson (@John_Hudson) July 11, 2019