BERLIN, July 20 (Reuters) - It is not yet clear if Europe will adapt quickly enough to rise to the new challenges it faces in taking more responsibility for solving conflicts in the world of the 21st century, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday.
“I understand the sense in the U.S. of them saying we must play a stronger role in solving conflicts in the world of the 21st century,” she said. “Not just militarily, but also politically,” she added, giving the example of European involvements in African conflicts where NATO was absent.
“The EU is in a transformation process,” she said. “It recognises the seriousness of the situation, but it hasn’t yet been resolved whether we are going to rise to the challenges quickly enough.”
She added: “We face a big economic challenge, and one day certainly also military, from the strengthening of China, and we must also deal with our relationship with Russia. We have lots to do and the order of the world is changing.” (Reporting by Thomas Escritt Editing by Michelle Martin)