North Atlantic Treaty Organisation commented on the proposal of the trump to increase defense spending

14 Julio, 2018, 03:28 | Author: Kelly Blake
  • Patty Hajdu

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to commit Canada to spend several more years leading a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation battle group in Latvia - news that will come during the alliance's summit in Brussels, where leaders will be braced for a showdown with U.S. President Donald Trump over military spending.

Canada will send up to 250 personnel and four Griffin helicopters and make up the bulk of the force for the NATO Western military alliance, beginning this fall.

Trudeau made the announcement in Riga following a meeting with Latvian Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis and indicated that he hopes the increased Canadian commitment to Latvia gets the attention of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

And while Trudeau acknowledged the target as a legitimate way of measuring the commitment of alliance members, he said he considers tangible and consistent resources and leadership, which Canada continues to demonstrate, to be more important.

"It is in the interests of security of each state and of the world", he said.

Speaking ahead of the NATO Summit, Trudeau said that Canada would assume command of the training and capacity building mission in Iraq for its first year, a Defense Post reporter at the "Our Shared Global Values" event in Brussels said.

"We have to build that democracy and strengthen it", Trudeau said at a German Marshall Fund event on the sidelines of the two-day summit.

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Former NATO supreme allied commander James Stavridis tells Power & Politics that Canada is punching above its weight on NATO operations, but could do more.

"European allies are stepping up". The United States spends about 3.5 per cent of its GDP (on defence).

Concerns about US disengagement have also deepened given that Trump is scheduled to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin just days after the summit.

Trump took Twitter swipes at Canada following the G7 summit - mostly over Canadian dairy policy - but reserved his most persistent and personal attacks for Trudeau himself, calling him "dishonest" and "weak" for telling the closing G7 news conference that Canada would not be "pushed around" on trade.

When asked if Trump would give Canada credit for heading the Iraq mission, Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland ducked the question.

Trump closed out the tumultuous two-day summit by reaffirming the United States' commitment to the almost 70-year-old alliance and signing the joint declaration, despite spending much of the summit berating allies over defence spending and accusing Germany of being beholden to Russia because it buys Russian natural gas.

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