U.S. allies greet Biden as next president despite Trump refusal to concede

BERLIN/LONDON/OTTAWA (Reuters) – Some of the United States’ biggest and closest allies quickly congratulated Democrat Joe Biden on Saturday, recognising his presidential election victory even though Donald Trump, with whom several have had rocky relations, had yet to concede.

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Germany, Canada and France, which have had strained ties with the Trump administration despite being its G7 and NATO partners, were among the first to recognise Biden’s victory, soon after major U.S. television networks declared it.

“I look forward to future cooperation with President Biden,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a statement on Twitter. “Our transatlantic friendship is irreplaceable if we are to master the great challenges of our time.”

Merkel’s finance minister, Olaf Scholz, went further, suggesting a Biden administration would mark a reset of trans-Atlantic ties. “Now there is a chance for a new and exciting chapter in trans-Atlantic relations,” he tweeted.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he looked forward to tackling “the world’s greatest challenges” with the new administration, including climate change, an issue with which many nations have argued over with Trump.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has had a much smoother relationship with Trump, also picked up the theme of climate change in congratulating Biden.

“The U.S. is our most important ally and I look forward to working closely together on our shared priorities, from climate change to trade and security.”

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Washington formally quit the Paris accord on limiting greenhouse gas emissions on Wednesday, fulfilling a pledge by Trump to withdraw the world’s second-largest emitter from the pact. Biden has promised to rejoin the agreement if elected.

“Trump is confirmed to have lost the election. This is good news for the planet, as the global far right loses its most powerful political asset,” tweeted Spain’s far-left deputy prime minister, Pablo Iglesias.

Ireland, where Biden traces his family roots, called him the 46th U.S. President, despite Trump accusing Biden of “rushing to falsely pose as the winner.” Trump has complained of electoral fraud without providing proof.

“Ireland takes pride in Joe Biden’s election, just as we are proud of all the generations of Irish women and Irish men and their ancestors whose toil and genius have enriched the diversity that powers America,” Prime Minister Micheal Martin said in a statement.

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