Trump falsely claims credit on North Atlantic Treaty Organisation spending

Trump, who shook North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies earlier in the week by demanding they increase defense spending, while criticizing the leaders of Germany and the United Kingdom, said he also planned to use the meeting with Putin to discuss Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014, its support for Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad and nuclear proliferation.

At the end of the first session of a two-day summit, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the aim first was to reach 2 percent, but moments later Trump tweeted that allies were undercutting the United States on trade and needed to immediately boost spending.

"Yesterday I let them know that I was extremely unhappy with what was happening", Trump said at an impromptu press conference, adding, "Now we are very happy".

Al Jazeera's diplomatic editor, James Bays, reporting from the Belgian capital, however, said that based on interviews with sources, "nothing it seems, in the closed-door meeting, was resolved". Trump tweeted an hour before the second day of the summit got underway.

The summit decisions, agreed by all 29 allied governments, won hardly any sustained public attention and the underlying unity was undercut by Trump's claims he had won new pledges in defence spending, forcing the French and Italian leaders into denials that dominated post-summit news conferences.

Earlier Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt backed Mr Trump's demands for allies which were not hitting the 2% target to do more. "It has been really unbelievable to see the level of spirit in that room".

He accused German Chancellor Angela Merkel of being beholden to Moscow due to energy imports, while letting Americans pay for protecting Germany from Russian Federation. Not fair to the US taxpayer.


A new poll shows that a plurality of Germans favor a drawdown of USA troops, and only 15 percent believe that Germany should raise its defense spending to 2 percent of GDP.

Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite told reporters she's comfortable with the Trump-Putin summit, but it "depends very much on outcomes".

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Thursday told CNN that the organisation's member countries have committed to defence spending at two percent of GDP, but would not confirm US President Donald Trump's claim that the target was actually four percent. "Therefore there is no additional spending", he said Thursday.

After throwing hand grenades for a day-and-a-half behind the scenes, insulting allies, and questioning the military alliance's very reason for being, the media was preparing for Mr Trump to do the same in a formal press conference - albeit hastily arranged. All I can say is, did you?

After Friday's press conference with Theresa May in which he rowed back on some of the more incendiary remarks he made about Brexit in his interview with the Sun, British officials were reassured the United States president can be chastened, if not cowed, when confronted by the damage he has wreaked. "It could happen", Trump said.

Trump's trip to Britain will test the bonds of the USA and U.K.'s special relationship. -Russian relations. He referenced a day-long hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday in which Republicans grilled Federal Bureau of Investigation agent Peter Strzok for anti-Trump text messages he sent while leading earlier probes of the campaign.

Trump pointed to the texts to label the ongoing investigation a "rigged witch hunt", and said the probe "really hurts our country and it really hurts our relationship with Russian Federation". But Trump's Thursday morning tweet, before meetings on Russian aggression and the war in Afghanistan, said allies "must" get to 4 percent.

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