Trump opens armistice visit to France with jab at Macron

Trump opens armistice visit to France with jab at Macron

But the talks may be tense after the president took to Twitter and called it "very insulting" for Macron to suggest a military may be needed to protect Europe from the U.S., China and Russian Federation.

Trump's comments were in response to Mr Macron's idea for the European Union to have its own dedicated military, created to defend Europe from China, Russia and the US. Macron's office declined to comment on Trump's tweet.

Trump is set to meet with Macron Saturday morning at the Élysée Palace in Paris, per USA Today. Trump has repeatedly complained that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies are not contributing enough towards the alliance's defense budget and relying heavily on the US. Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have both publicly questioned whether Europe can depend on the come to its aid in the event of war. Political and military analysts question whether European countries have the will, money or materiel to replace the raw power of the United States.

According to a statement issued earlier by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, President Buhari is expected to join the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres and other world leaders in discussing contributions towards global peace while underscoring the imperative of collective action.

Coming just days after Macron called for a "real European army" to reduce dependence on the United States, and with the vocal support of senior figures in Brussels, the coalition agreement will once again raising the spectre of a European Army.

Trump and Macron's early relationship was marked by kisses, frequent meetings and marathon power handshakes.

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Trump and Macron also have extensive differences over trade and USA sanctions on Iran.

European leaders have been rattled since a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit earlier in the year, when they perceived Trump's demands for billions of additional dollars in military spending from them as a threat that the United States would pull out of the almost 70-year-old alliance.

The dividends of Macron's cultivation of Mr. Trump are "modest at best", said Stewart M. Patrick, a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

At the same time, Macron has increasingly been positioning himself as a bulwark against the rising tide of Trump-style populism across Europe, speaking out loudly against the dangers of nationalism and isolationist retreat.

"He's starting to become the antithesis of President Trump's public messaging", said Heather Conley, director of the Europe program at Center for Strategic and International Studies.

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