US President Donald Trump's top diplomat promised on Tuesday a new democratic world order in which Washington will strengthen or jettison international agreements as it sees fit to stop "bad actors" such as Russia, China and Iran from gaining.
In a twist on Trump's "America First" policy, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Trump was not abandoning its global leadership but instead reshaping the post-World War Two system on the basis of sovereign states, not multilateral institutions.
"In the finest traditions of our great democracy, we are rallying the noble nations to build a new liberal order that prevents war and achieves greater prosperity," Pompeo told diplomats and officials in a foreign policy speech.
"We are acting to preserve, protect, and advance an open, just, transparent and free world of sovereign states," Pompeo said.
Pompeo's address rejected concerns among many US allies that Trump is undermining the West by withdrawing from climate, free-trade and arms control accords. He said Trump was reforming the liberal order, not destroying it. He cited Britain's decision to quit the European Union as a sign supranational organisations were not working.
He also doubted on the EU's commitment to its citizens. Alluding to Trump's policies in a speech on Monday in Cambridge, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini warned of "the rule of the jungle" replacing the rule of law.