Biden to address video summit of EU leaders on Thursday

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European Council President Charles Michel, left, talks during a video conference with the leaders of Germany, France, Portugal and Greece, on the screen, ahead of the EU summit at the European Council headquarters in Brussels, Tuesday, March 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco, Pool)

BRUSSELS – U.S. President Joe Biden will join a video summit of European Union leaders on Thursday to discuss improving trans-Atlantic cooperation after four years of worsening relations during the Trump administration.

“Time to rebuild our transatlantic alliance,” EU Council President and summit host Charles Michel said in a twitter message.

The 27 EU leaders have a regular two-day summit starting Thursday, where they will discuss everything from vaccine strategy to relations with Russia.

They overwhelmingly welcomed the election of Biden last November.

Earlier this month, a first phone call between Biden and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen clinched a trade breakthrough with a four-month suspension of tariffs used in the longstanding Airbus-Boeing dispute.

Von der Leyen has invited Biden to a global health summit in Rome on May 21 to streamline the fight against COVID-19, the common enemy that has killed over a million people in the EU and the U.S. combined.