After Tense Summit, Trump Declares, 'I Believe in NATO'

After Tense Summit, Trump Declares, 'I Believe in NATO'

Leaders had gone into the second day, set to focus mainly on ending the long war in Afghanistan, with low expectations, showing the extent of European frustration with Trump's "America first" policies among the other 28 members of the alliance.

He described US allies in the region as "afraid about what our president might agree to", and he told reporters he "very much" shares their worries.

The president said during his press conference that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies agreed to "substantially up" their defense spending commitments. Though she said that Germany did have "a lot of issues with Russian Federation", she noted that it was important to "keep the communication line between countries or alliances and opponents" open. The US president has been particularly critical of Germany, accusing Berlin of relying on the US for security while not paying enough into NATO's coffers.

Merkel said she welcomed the chance to have an "exchange of views" with Trump.

"I think he has to expect they're going to deny, deny everything", the South Dakotan said.

"I told people I'd be very unhappy if they didn't up their commitments very substantially", Trump said.

"We call upon [North Korea] to fully implement its global obligations; to eliminate its nuclear, chemical, and biological warfare capabilities and ballistic missiles, and abandon all related programmes", the statement said. "I'm very consistent", he replied. Allies will deliver on fairer burden-sharing, he said, pointing out that European Allies and Canada are expected to spend an extra $266 billion on defence between now and 2024.

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Speaking at a media conference after two days of talks, Mr Trump said the US's allies had committed to raising their commitment beyond 2 per cent. "We're discussing military expenditure. talking about trade", Trump told reporters who were allowed into the meeting room. He noted that he had met with Trump the evening before and they discussed increasing the USA troop presence in Poland.

Germany, Europe's biggest economy, spends just 1.24 per cent, compared with 3.5 per cent for the US.

The spike in tensions comes as President Trump is preparing for his first-ever summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, in less than a week, sparking worry among allies.

Trump said "actual" USA military spending is 4.2 percent of GDP, without explaining the big discrepancy.

But NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg pointed out that military spending had been rising in Europe since 2014 and members were making efforts to meet the objective, particularly Germany, which is often singled out by Trump for criticism.

Leaders of Azerbaijan and Georgia, non-NATO members, were asked to leave for the emergency session.

Woody Johnson, the USA ambassador to the United Kingdom, dismissed the significance of the protests, telling Fox News that one of the reasons the two countries are so close "is because we have the freedoms that we've all fought for. And, as long as Russian Federation persists in its efforts to undermine our interests and values, we must continue to deter and counter them".

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