Allies doubt Trump threatened to bail on North Atlantic Treaty Organisation in spending feud

In February, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said only about half of the alliance's 29 members are on track to meet the 2024 deadline - which he said would boost spending by $46 billion.

US President Donald Trump launched a strong verbal attack on Germany on Wednesday (11 July) for its support to the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, aimed at bringing more Russian gas to Germany under the Baltic Sea. But now, according to media reports, Trump has threatened to withdraw the USA from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ) or to change its pivotal role in the alliance, over the matter.

He said the US commitment to the 29-member North Atlantic Treaty Organization remains very strong and cited "the additional money they will be putting up" and "the level of spirit in that room" during the meetings.

Trump said there had been "tremendous progress" after his "firm" warnings during the tense two-day meeting in Brussels, during which he singled out Germany for special criticism.

Trump threw the summit into turmoil by demanding not only that allies reach their commitment to increase spending to two percent of GDP "immediately" - instead of by 2024 as previously agreed - but also telling them to eventually double the figure to a punishing four percent.

"The communique is clear", Macron said.

In the closed-door session, Trump told his counterparts that if they did not meet their defense spending targets of 2 percent of gross domestic product by January, the United States would go it alone, according to two officials briefed on the meeting.

Trump also pointed to progress over the last year, prior to this North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit, to tout his success at this year's summit - something the United States ambassador to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation had previously touted in a conference call with reporters ahead of the summit.

Trump scuppers trade deal with United Kingdom under May's Brexit
Some signs read "Dump Trump", "Lock Him Up" and "There Will Be Hell Toupee". Trump and May had dinner together at Blenheim Palace on Thursday night.

Trump was whisked away to an oasis of warm greetings at a black-tie reception at Blenheim, birthplace of Winston Churchill, the larger-than-life British leader cited by the president as a model of leadership. Trump wants the spending to go up to 4% of GDP, which is more than even the USA now spends on defense.

But I would also encourage the president to exercise caution with Russian Federation - which has proven to be a hostile nation to the United States and our Western allies. "Although our views on several issues differ, the alliance maintains a firm dialogue with Russian Federation", he added, mentioning the Crimea situation and the differences in the countries' views on the control of chemical weapons use.

When asked how he planned to fix the situation, Trump said: "If I knew, I wouldn't tell you, because that would put us at a disadvantage".

FORDHAM: I don't think from speaking to diplomats there that people thought it was likely, but just the suggestion that it might be possible did definitely make people nervous.

Few European governments dispute that they could do a lot better. "That is all", Macron said.

And he praised himself for getting them all to sign up to bigger defence budgets and sharing the financial burden more equally.

Countries also committed in 2014 to ensure that 20% of defence spending went on equipment - 15 countries are hitting that target.

Shortly after Trump's comments were posted by The Sun, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders insisted her boss holds his United Kingdom counterpart May in high esteem. Leaders explained to Trump that they could not make firm commitments inside the closed meeting, since majority needed parliamentary consent to expand budgets.

Related Articles

  • Ray Lewis, Britt McHenry hit hard by the Twitter purge

    Uhuru, who is the most followed Kenyan on Twitter , had 3,234,935 followers as of July 12 but lost 16,071 of them in the purge. Ms Perry, who has the most followed profile on the site, has lost 2.8 million followers, dropping from 109.6m to 106.7m.
    Protesters attack Sharifs' Avenfield flats in London

    Protesters attack Sharifs' Avenfield flats in London

    Safdar, who was formally arrested on Sunday, was sent to prison in the garrison city of Rawalpindi on Monday. Strict security measures were also in place outside the complex, Geo TV reported.
    Kylie Jenner to become youngest self-made billionaire

    Kylie Jenner to become youngest self-made billionaire

    The 20-year-old reached the milestone by starting her Kylie Cosmetics line that boomed into mega success and will now most likely be passed down to her daughter, Stormi.
  • Cristiano Ronaldo enjoys dinner on holiday with family and friends

    Cristiano Ronaldo enjoys dinner on holiday with family and friends

    The USB union believes the decision is causing Fiat to miss out on investment, which the transfer money could have been used for. Notably, the Agnelli family runs both Juventus and the automobile-maker.
    Unai Emery says Jack Wilshere Arsenal decision was 'tactical and technical'

    Unai Emery says Jack Wilshere Arsenal decision was 'tactical and technical'

    He said: "We signed the players who we needed and only if one player is a big opportunity for us will we sign them". Emery says the team is done doing transfer business now, but obviously a can happen between now and deadline day.
    Game of Thrones racks up 22 Emmy nominations

    Game of Thrones racks up 22 Emmy nominations

    It is worth noting that this is the first year that WWE was able to get their programming on the preliminary ballot. The GLOW series on Netflix earned an Emmy award nomination for outstanding comedy series.
  • Barcelona offer £60m for Willian - report - Liga 2018

    Barcelona offer £60m for Willian - report - Liga 2018

    The Blues talisman Eden Hazard could leave the club this summer because of the chaos at the club regarding a managerial change. But Terreur says that while Barcelona HAVE made contact with Hazard, Chelsea are reluctant to sell.
    Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh: A look into his finances

    Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh: A look into his finances

    Public real estate filings indicate that the couple has refinanced their mortgage twice, most recently in 2015. Other costs were related to home improvements, White House spokesman Raj Shah told the Washington Post .
    Belgium favored in third-place match over England

    Belgium favored in third-place match over England

    Croatia, a country of about 4 million people, came to a standstill as fans watched the game on screens in squares and cafes. He missed the knockout stages as he had to rush back to his then Croatian club Hajduk Split for pre-season training.
  • Stop zooming in on attractive  women

    Stop zooming in on attractive women

    However, he acknowledged that the number of incidents on the streets may have been 10 times higher but not reported. Addiechi added that it was not a "proactive campaign" but said "we'll take action against things that are wrong".
    Samsung Galaxy Note 9 looks bold in blue and yellow promo leak

    Samsung Galaxy Note 9 looks bold in blue and yellow promo leak

    In complying with the rumours, the Galaxy Note 9 appears to retain familiar aesthetics to 2017's Galaxy Note 8. Samsung particularly markets its Note handsets to users who want a device that can help them work on the go.
    If he's jailed, will accompany him: Nawaz Sharif's mother

    If he's jailed, will accompany him: Nawaz Sharif's mother

    After the Supreme Court ousted Sharif last July, the courts barred him from heading the PML-N party he founded. The army will deploy 350,000 security personnel to polling stations throughout the country on election day.