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Pompeo cancels EU trip amid apparent 'snub' by Luxembourg

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By Efi Koutsokosta, Jack Parrock
Secretary of State-designate Mike Pompeo pauses while speaking during the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on confirmation Thursday, April 12, 2018, on Capitol Hill
Secretary of State-designate Mike Pompeo pauses while speaking during the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on confirmation Thursday, April 12, 2018, on Capitol Hill   -   Copyright  Alex Brandon/AP

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a last minute change of plans on Tuesday night, cancelling a trip to Belgium and Luxembourg after what US media are calling a 'snub'.

Officials in the Grand-Duchy declined to comment on the reason for the cancellation, simply confirming to Euronews that the trip had been cancelled.

The scheduling change came less than 24 hours after it was announced.

There were no meetings scheduled with EU institution heads. A senior EU official confirmed to Euronews that they had 'no knowledge of a request' to meet the Council President Charles Michel. Similarly, and EU commission spokesperson said no meeting had been on the cards with Commission president von der Leyen.

European leaders have been outspoken in their support of president-elect Joe Biden, and also their condemnation of the recent violence on Capitol Hill.

In an interview with RTL radio on January 7, Luxembourg's Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn had called Trump a "criminal", and a "political pyromaniac who should be sent to criminal court."

In Belgium, Pompeo had been slated to meet NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. In a rare statement, Stoltenberg had tweeted about the events in Washington DC saying they were 'shocking'.

According to the US State Department, the reason for the trip being cancelled was in order to work on the Biden transition.