EU leaders discuss defense, US and China relationships

  • Front row left, to right, Slovenia’s Prime Minister Janez Jansa, European Council President Charles Michel, French President Emmanuel Macron and Lithuania’s President Gitanas Nauseda pose with other EU leaders during a group photo at an EU summit, at the Brdo Castle in Kranj, Slovenia, Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2021. EU leaders are meeting Tuesday evening to discuss increasingly tense relations with China and the security implications of the chaotic U.S.-led exit from Afghanistan, before taking part in a summit with Balkans leaders on Wednesday. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

BRDO CASTLE, Slovenia — European Union leaders met for the first time Tuesday since the messy Western troop withdrawal from Afghanistan and France’s loss of a multibillion-dollar submarine deal with Australia, events that they argue have exposed Europe’s need for more autonomy on defense.