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Europe will give determined response to any U.S. tariffs: Merkel

FILE PHOTO: German Chancellor Angela Merkel looks on during a news conference with Portugal's Prime Minister Antonio Costa in Lisbon, Portugal, May 31 2018. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

LISBON (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday that the European Union would give a “smart, determined and jointly agreed” response if the United States decides to impose tariffs on European steel and aluminum imports.

“We don’t know the decision yet but if tariffs were to be imposed, then we have a clear stance within the European Union,” Merkel said during a news conference in Lisbon.

“We are convinced that these tariffs are not in line with WTO rules,” Merkel said, pointing to a joint decision by European Union leaders to demand a permanent exemption from the U.S. tariffs and offer broader trade talks on a certain basis.

Writing by Michael Nienaber; Editing by Michelle Martin