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13 July 2018, 06:46 | Darnell Patrick
Trump: Nato states to increase defence funding
After a two-day North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels, Belgium, President Donald Trump is visiting the United Kingdom, where protesters are gathering in London and the Green Day song "American Idiot" has scaled the British pop charts.
Trudeau said he did agree to uphold Canada's commitment to the 2014 Wales NATO summit pledge on defence investment, but took pains to point out the declaration technically states NATO allies would merely "aim to move towards" the two per cent guideline within a decade. But now, according to media reports, Trump has threatened to withdraw the USA from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ) or to change its pivotal role in the alliance, over the matter.
Trump says at a news conference Thursday in Brussels that he told "people" that he would be "very unhappy" if they didn't increase their commitments.
Another NATO diplomat said Trump trampled on protocol by pointing at some leaders he said were not spending enough and addressing Merkel by her first name, referring to her as "you, Angela".
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, left, talks to U.S. President Donald Trump as British Prime Minister Theresa May, right watches at the opening ceremony of the NATO summit at NATO headquarters in Brussels.
Trump delivered the line after what several sources said was an improvised rant focused on his grievances about transatlantic ties, but appeared to hesitate before issuing his ultimatum, which led to some confusion about what he really meant.
In the closed-door session, Trump told his counterparts that if they did not meet their defense spending targets of 2 percent of gross domestic product by January, the United States would go it alone, according to two officials briefed on the meeting.
Pressed by reporters about whether he threatened to pull out of NATO, Trump acknowledged, "It was a little tough for a little while".
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Trump stressed that NATO's budget had been unfair to the U.S. but now he was sure it would be fair.
Journalist Tom Newton Dunn, Trump's interviewer, said the president seemed "sensitive" about the inflatable "Trump baby" being flown over London and its accompanying protests, set for Friday. We spend on defense much more than Russian Federation and as much as China.
EU President Donald Tusk stepped up to the fight with his own salvo against Trump on Tuesday, telling him to "appreciate your allies" and reminding him Washington that Europe had come to its aid following the 9/11 attacks. It was also reported that Trump asked Macron privately to leave the World Trade Organization.
Trump insisted that he would bring up key subjects including Syria, although he once again failed to rule out recognising Russia's annexation of Crimea. "We committed ourselves to spending a bit more". "I'm just saying, I think he'd be a great prime minister". "As he said in his interview with The Sun she is a very good person and he never said anything bad about her", Sanders said.
Defense-budget increases in inflation-adjusted dollars could make for a more reliable measure of higher spending.
Few European governments dispute that they could do a lot better.
Trump's surprise demand came after he clashed with Chancellor Angela Merkel, calling Germany a "captive" of Russian Federation because of its gas links and singling out Berlin for failing to pay its way.
Then, in a head-snapping pivot at the end, he declared the alliance a "fine-tuned machine" that had acceded to his demands to speed up increases in military spending to relieve pressure on the US budget.
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