Trump Continues to Hammer NATO Nations on Defense Spending

Trump Continues to Hammer NATO Nations on Defense Spending

Leaders of the member nations of the North Atlantic Treaty Group will meet for the second and closing day of their annual summit in Brussels nonetheless reeling from U.S. President Donald Trump’s tongue-lashing of each the alliance and Germany, it’s wealthiest European member.

The president started his day tweeting.

NATO leaders will attempt Thursday to maneuver past U.S. President Donald Trump’s calls for for larger protection spending, and give attention to ending the lengthy conflict in Afghanistan. NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg needs leaders to comply with fund Afghan safety forces till 2024, regardless of public fatigue in Western international locations about their involvement within the battle.

Throughout a breakfast assembly with NATO Secretary-Normal Jens Stoltenberg on Wednesday’s opening day, Trump accused Germany of being a “captive” of Russia for permitting Russian power firm Gazprom to assemble the Nord Stream 2 pipeline via its waters.

He additionally raised a longstanding U.S. concern that Europe enhance its share of spending on protection, describing the present scenario as “disproportionate and never honest to the taxpayers of the US.”

“The US is paying far an excessive amount of and different international locations aren’t paying sufficient,” complained Trump. “This has been occurring for many years, it’s disproportionate and never honest to the taxpayers of the US.” Trump additionally took credit score for starting a reversal of declining protection spending amongst NATO members.

He took to Twitter later within the day to induce NATO members to right away contribute 2 % of their GDP to the alliance.

In the course of the NATO summit, Trump can also be holding an unspecified variety of one-on-one conferences with different European leaders, in line with White Home officers.

Observers say these leaders are sure to be concerned after the U.S. president berated his fellow leaders on commerce on the current Group of seven summit in Canada.

Following the discussions in Belgium, Trump heads to Britain, the place he’s to be hosted by British Prime Minister Theresa Might, who all of the sudden finds herself embroiled in home political upheaval stemming from intra-party disagreement over phrases for the nation’s exit from the EU, referred to as Brexit.

Trump’s itinerary will largely hold him out of central London, the place vital protests are anticipated.

After visits to England and Scotland, the place the president owns two golf resorts, Trump will go to Helsinki for a extremely anticipated summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“Frankly, Putin often is the best of all of them,” relative to the anticipated contentious encounters with America’s conventional European allies, Trump instructed reporters on the White Home on Tuesday.

VOA’s White Home correspondent Steve Herman contributed to this report.

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