Donald Trump says Germany is 'totally controlled by Russia' at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit

12 Julio, 2018, 04:23 | Author: Kelly Blake
  • A file image of Gavin Williamson and Jim Mattis

Trudeau has said that the two per cent benchmark doesn't adequately address the totality of a country's commitment to the alliance.

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies agreed at their Wales summit in 2014 to try to spend two percent of GDP on defence within 10 years, but the White House said Trump suggested that was not enough.

Baltic leaders fearful of any repeat of Russia's annexation of Crimea called for unity as they arrived at the summit, while Slovakia's President Andrej Kiska said his country was "one of the good guys" because he was increasing defense spending.

Trump's pipeline criticism was an unusual line of attack for a president who has proclaimed himself eager to improve relations with Russia's Vladimir Putin and dismissed the USA intelligence community's assessment that Russian Federation tried to undermine Western democracy by meddling in the 2016 US presidential election to help Trump win.

President Donald Trump shared on Twitter Wednesday a video of sharp words he directed toward NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg about Germany being "totally controlled by Russia" regarding their energy relationship.

Mr Trump argued against Germany's commitment to the €15bn Gazprom-led project while still relying on the USA to protect the country from Russian Federation.

"This has gone on for many presidents".

He added that it's "not fair to the taxpayers of the United States and we're going to make it fair".

"That's exactly why all allies agree that those who are spending less than 2% have to spend more and that's exactly what we have started to do".

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Meanwhile, NATO members in Europe contributed a total of $249.7 billion to their defense budgets and spent an average of 1.46% of GDP.

TRUMP: "We're protecting Germany".

"But she also says that in the end we need to be engaging with Russian Federation and that's why she welcomes the president's decision to go there".

Trump fired back: "How can you be together when a country is getting its energy from the person you want protection against or from the group that you want protection against?" "The two per cent is just one of the ways you can look at it". And I think the answer to that question is yes, including in Latvia, big time.

Dmitry Kiselyov, presenter of Russia's main weekly TV news show "Vesti Nedeli", said Moscow had seen how Trump had received other leaders on home soil, showing footage of Trump holding Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's hand in a vice-like grip, brushing dandruff off French President Emmanuel Macron's shoulder and glowering next to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

"I think we can cope with it", von der Leyen said.

The president and his fellow critics argue that if America does less, others will do more - that its largess facilitates free riders.

Obama suggested the United Kingdom's reluctance to increase its defence spending could threaten its "special relationship" with the United States.

"We are investing heavily in the German armed forces and other European countries too, because the armed forces need it. We can't expect the American public to pay all the costs of this alliance".

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