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Obama urges nations not to give in to isolationist impulses

Obama urges nations not to give in to isolationist impulses

US President Barack Obama speaks at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center in Athens, Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2016. Rather, he was forced to admit that United States and other democratic regimes around the world faced "serious challenges" because the "same forces of globalization and technology and integration that have delivered so much progress, have created so much wealth, have also revealed deep fault lines".

Obama insisted that people deserve the right to choose their governments and leaders.

There are dozens of quotes New Europe readers will be seeing across the Twittersphere.

Mr Obama said globalisation has brought many economic benefits to the world.

The speech transcript will be posted here upon release.

Asserting that the treaty to protect allies was ironclad, Obama reiterated that the USA commitment to NATO and Europe would continue under Trump's presidency. "I'll have more fun", he says.

The Express reports: Mr Obama's visit to Athens, Greece, was supposed to be a grand farewell but descended into chaos when angry rioters took to the street to demand he leave.

In comments Tuesday Obama cautioned the world must guard against "a rise in a crude sort of nationalism or ethnic identity or tribalism that is built around an "us" and a 'them'".

Greece is a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. While it is clear that the divide in this country is painful and steep - whereby our politics may prevent the coming together on agreements of policy and philosophy - we still have more in common as a people than we do not.

In the same way that democracies are based on the peaceful resolution of disagreements within society, so cooperation is the best way to resolve conflicts with nations, he said. And I am confident that just as America's commitment to the Translantic Alliance has endured for seven decades - whether it's been under a Democratic or a Republican administration - that commitment will continue.

Asked for his comments on what the Democratic Party needed to do to improve its prospects for the next elections, he stressed that it had to work on its popular base and cited the need for "new voices and new ideas" to emerge, referring obliquely to the end of the Clinton machine that the November 8 defeat constituted.

Mr Obama is now attending a state dinner hosted by Greece's president, Prokopis Pavlopoulos, in the ballroom of the presidential mansion in central Athens.

Obama is delivering what is likely his last major address overseas as president.

The 5th Century B.C. Parthenon temple is surrounded these days by scaffolding as part of maintenance works. From the hilltop, Obama could look out in almost every direction at sprawling Athens.

Before his speech, Obama climbed up the Acropolis, the ancient citadel that serves as a monument to free thought and artistic expression.

Obama and his closest advisers were irritated when it leaked out that Trump, during his White House visit, had displayed a lack of thorough knowledge about key issues while Trump's aides appeared unfamiliar with the process of staffing up a White House, officials said. Demonstrations were banned in parts of Athens, and road and subway stations were shut down for the first official visit of a sitting USA president since Bill Clinton came in 1999.

Greece's government hoped Obama would help persuade some of Greece's more reluctant global creditors to grant debt relief, and pressure other European countries to share more of the burden of the continent's refugee crisis.

On his last foreign trip as president, Obama has repeatedly tried to draw lessons from Donald Trump's victory in the US presidential election, hoping it can serve as wake-up call in the USA and overseas.