Published: Thu, July 12, 2018
People | By Neil Grant

After Trump's spending demands, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit turns to Afghanistan

After Trump's spending demands, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit turns to Afghanistan

Mr Trump has been pressing member countries to spend more on defence, accusing them of passing the burden on to the US. "They got rid of their coal plants".

Any such increase would be almost impossible for smaller countries in Europe to achieve, and it is not clear that the capitals of Europe could muster the public or political support for such breathtaking increases in defense spending.

"The President raised this same issue when he was at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation past year".

"It's sad when Germany makes a massive gas deal with Russia where you're supposed to be guarding against Russia, and Germany goes out and pays billions and billions of dollars a year to Russia", he said.

US President Donald Trump launched a strong verbal attack on Germany on Wednesday (11 July) for its support to the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, aimed at bringing more Russian gas to Germany under the Baltic Sea.

In a pointed apparent reference to Mr Trump's upcoming meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Mr Tusk noted that European military spending "is an investment in our security, which can not be said with confidence about Russian and Chinese spending". "NATO has not treated us fairly, but I think we'll work something out". "I think we have to talk to Germany about it".

While U.S. defense spending makes up 70 percent of combined allied governments' military budgets, just 15 percent of U.S. expenditure is spent in Europe on NATO-related defense.

"I welcome President Trump's forthcoming meeting with President Putin: open channels of communication between the United States and Russian Federation are key to managing the risks of confrontation", she planned to say, according to the spokesman.

He said that German Chancellor Angela Merkel runs the nation that is the "de facto leader of the EU" and that its failure to "properly fund NATO" should be criticized.

The U.S. spends about 3.5 percent of GDP on defense, far higher than other member states. "That is very good, especially for people in eastern Germany".

The meeting comes ahead of Mr Trump's four-day working visit to the United Kingdom, during which he will hold talks with Mrs May at Chequers, meet the Queen in Windsor Castle and spend two days in Scotland preparing for Monday's face-to-face summit with Mr Putin in Finland.

European Union figures show Russian Federation may be responsible for between 50 percent and 75 percent of Germany's gas imports, but gas makes up less than 20 percent of Germany's power production mix.

In his statement posted on Twitter, Kerry said Trump's broadside against an American ally had weakened the United States.

Trump told reporters during brief remarks at the end of the meeting that the two had a "very, very good relationship" and congratulated Merkel on her "tremendous success".

Trump has long complained that European NATO members do not pay enough for their own defence, singling out Germany for particular criticism.

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