BRUSSELS (AP) — China’s European Union envoy is urging the 27-nation bloc to deepen its ties with his country even further and says he hopes the EU’s desire for “strategic autonomy” will guide its foreign policy in the future. The EU is China’s biggest trading partner and they are also economic competitors. But Chinese Ambassador Zhang Ming said Wednesday that China-EU ties have “stood the test of time.” The term “strategic autonomy” has sown confusion over Europe’s intentions. Some see it as a by-word for acting independently from the United States, others for greater trade protectionism or even for breaking away from the NATO military alliance. EU foreign ministers are still trying to establish exactly what it means.
pic.twitter.com/GlP7SFk25y— The Alliance (@TheAAF) April 6, 2019Reports on Tuesday said the Alliance would shut down immediately, two weeks before the scheduled completion of its 10-week regular season. The league reportedly was in danger of going under as early as Week 2, before investor Tom Dundon pledged $250 million in exchange for majority ownership of the league. Dundon reportedly spent $70 million after taking over control.WHY IS THE AAF FOLDING? Who’s to blame for league’s demise?Dundon threatened last month to shutter the league if he couldn’t reach an agreement with the NFL Players Association on loaning NFL players to AAF teams. The Alliance was intended to be a developmental league where NFL players could receive game experience.TIMELINE: Events leading up to reported end AAF players have complained about being evicted from their residences and being stuck with credit card bills since the league’s shutdown. League co-founder Bill Polian said Friday (per Pro Football Talk) that he and other AAF execs were working to help solve problems. RIP, AAF: League’s eight best momentsThe Alliance announced Thursday that players were authorized to sign with NFL teams. The Alliance of American Football announced late Friday what had been reported days earlier.The startup league sent out a tweet apologizing for its decision to suspend operations but declined to give the reasons, citing “legal processes.”