Last foreign trip: Obama in Europe to reassure allies
US President Barack Obama flew into Athens on his final foreign trip to Europe on Tuesday, seeking to calm the nerves of allies concerned by Donald Trump’s surprise presidential election victory. With Europeans worried by Trump’s downplaying the importance of the NATO alliance, Obama pointedly told Greek daily Kathimerini before his visit that Washington had to resist the “urge” of isolationism.
“Our best chance for progress is to resist the urge to turn inward and instead reinvigorate our shared values and work together,” Obama said. Obama cautioned his brash successor Trump that he faces a reality check if he tries to enact some of his more controversial campaign promises.
“This office has a way of waking you up,” said the outgoing President. The fourth president to travel to Greece, Obama will visit the Acropolis before delivering a much-awaited speech on the challenges of globalisation. He will then hold talks later Tuesday with Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos and Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras. Security was tight in central Athens, with thousands of police officers on the streets and traffic to be affected for several hours.