Donald Tusk takes a stand for European liberal democracy after Putin interview
- Credit: PA Archive/PA Images
Donald Tusk has struck back against 'authoritarianism, personality cults, and the rule of oligarchs', after Vladimir Putin declared liberalism 'obsolete'.
The European Council president spoke out after the Russian president declared the death of the "liberal idea" in an interview with the Financial Times.
"The global stage cannot become an arena where the stronger will dictate their conditions to the weaker, where egoism will dominate over solidarity, and where nationalistic emotions will dominate over common sense," said Tusk in response.
He said Europeans will "firmly and univocally defend and promote liberal democracy".
"Whoever claims that liberal democracy is obsolete, also claims that freedoms are obsolete, that the rule of law is obsolete and that human rights are obsolete," he added
You may also want to watch:
The comments were made prior to the G20 summit in Osaka.
Having visited survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear bombings, he said he had promised to bring words of warning to the G20 participants about the price of global conflict.
- 1 Betty Boothroyd delivers scathing assessment of Boris Johnson's government
- 2 House of Lords defies No 10 and votes to heavily defeat Boris Johnson's Brexit bill
- 3 German MEP tells Boris Johnson he 'owes' Britons a Brexit deal as she urged a return to EU trade talks
- 4 Boris Johnson 'plans to resign' in six months because he can't live on £150k salary
- 5 Leaked memo exposes government fears over rise in support for Scottish independence
- 6 ERG MP says Boris Johnson should consider cutting ties with Church of England following Brexit row
- 7 UK Business leaders describe Brexit call with Boris Johnson and Michael Gove as 'pointless'
- 8 Diane Abbott accuses Keir Starmer of having 'other motives' while shadow Brexit secretary
- 9 Tory minister branded 'disgraceful' after dismissing child hunger in Britain as something that has 'been going on for years'
- 10 Fool's gold? Nigel Farage wants you to invest your trust in his financial advice service
"What I find really obsolete are: authoritarianism, personality cults, the rule of oligarchs," said Tusk.
The Russian president had claimed in his FT interview that admitting over one million refugees and protecting their rights "presupposes ... that migrants can kill, plunder and rape with impunity," he said, echoing the populist sentiments of Trump and Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán.
He denied covertly aiding the rise of populism and the nerve agent attack on Sergei Skripal on British soil.
He told the FT that the "liberal idea" had outlived its purpose, suggesting that it had been "dictated" to the people.
Watchdog Human Rights Watch has noted Putin's crackdown on political opposition around the 2018 elections that returned him to power, particularly the stifling of criticism online and the suppression of opposition candidate Alexei Navalny.
Become a Supporter
The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.