US Vice President Pence in Brussels to strengthen bilateral ties

A month after US President Donald Trump caused alarm by endorsing Brexit and suggesting others may follow Britain out of the EU, Pence says he had come to "the home" of the EU with a message.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

US Vice President Mike Pence shakes hands with European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini in Brussels, Belgium, February 20, 2017.

Updated Feb 21, 2017

US Vice President Mike Pence met senior European Union officials in Brussels on Monday in an effort to foster better relations.

Speaking of a "strong commitment ... to continue cooperation and partnership with the European Union," Pence said, "Whatever our differences, our two continents share the same heritage, the same values and above all, the same purpose to promote peace and prosperity through freedom, democracy and the rule of law."

Pence's comments come after US President Donald Trump caused alarm among EU leaders by endorsing Britain's decision to leave the bloc. 

They're also concerned about Trump's links with the Russian administration. 

EU officials said they were encouraged by what they called Pence's clear assurances, including those on US backing for holding the European Union together after Brexit, though they will watch carefully to see how far Trump's actions match his deputy's words.

Pence's two-day visit also included a meeting with NATO Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg - where he reassured leaders of Washington's commitment to the military alliance.

TRT World's Kevin Ozebek is following the story from Brussels.

TRTWorld and agencies