Trump sets North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies' military spending target to 4 percent

12 Julio, 2018, 11:43 | Author: Kelly Blake

In recent months Trump has repeatedly launched invective at America´s partners in the Atlantic alliance, a cornerstone of European security since World War II, accusing them of freeloading on the USA for defense. "They got rid of their coal plants".

Washington repeated a warning on Wednesday to Western firms invested in Russia's Nord Stream 2 pipeline to Germany that they were at risk of sanctions, and said Moscow was using the project to divide Europe.

Lawmakers in the US seemed to break with the president's attacks, issuing their support for the decades-old organization. "Must pay 2% of GDP IMMEDIATELY, not by 2025".

Trump, who later arrived at NATO's new billion-dollar headquarters in his presidential limousine, appeared to substantially overstate German reliance on Russian energy and to imply the German government was funding the pipeline, which Berlin says is a commercial venture.

Trump told NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg that Germany was wrong to support a new Baltic Sea pipeline to import Russian gas while being slow to meet targets for contributing to NATO defence spending meant to protect Europe from Russia.

"We should first get to 2 pct", NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, adding that eight of the 29 allies were meeting that target, while others had a plan to do - turning a leaf on years of defense budget cuts. "I think that two world wars and the Cold War taught us that we are stronger together than apart", he told the president, trying to calm tensions. "I am very happy that we are today united in freedom as the federal republic". The former USA secretary of state and MA senator questioned if the president, who has long railed against North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, understood the "huge difference" the group has made for the United States and Europe.

It didn't take long for German Chancellor Angela Merkel to respond to Trump's comments.

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"I don't understand why Germany would be so in favor of supporting that particular supply source instead of diversifying", said Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Trump is scheduled to meet with Russian leader Vladimir Putin early next week in Helsinki.

"The president is going to mention the fact that Europe is becoming more and more dependent on Russian Federation for their energy sources, specifically Germany with their invitation to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline", Barrasso told Fox News. We have a fundamental disagreements on principles and objectives between Trump and the Europeans.

The unexpected demand from Trump during a closed-door meeting of heads of state laid down a new, virtually unachievable marker for a peacetime military spending in an alliance already struggling to meet current defense spending commitments. "On top of this the European Union has a Trade Surplus of $151 Million with the United States, with big Trade Barriers on USA goods. NO!"

The defense minister agreed with Trump about defense spending.

Former secretary of state John Kerry blasted President Trump's criticism of Germany in a lengthy statement on Wednesday morning as "strange", "counterproductive", and "disgraceful".

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