NATO chief welcomes increased US defense spending in Europe
- Author: Leroy Wright May 25, 2017,
May 25, 2017, 19:10
On his arrival on Wednesday in Brussels, the city he once said had been turned into a "hellhole" by Muslim immigration, the president was greeted by around 9,000 protesters saying "Trump not welcome".
Trump's campaign comments questioning NATO's relevance deeply unnerved member states, particularly those at Russia's doorstep that count on USA support to ward off Moscow's increasingly aggressive posturing.
The Pope gave Mr Trump a signed copy of a message he delivered for World Peace Day, along with some of his writings about the need to protect the environment.
"Many allies would like to see North Atlantic Treaty Organisation as a full member of the coalition for two reasons: partly because it sends a strong and clear message of unity in the fight against terrorism and especially in light of the terrorist attacks in Manchester, I think it's important that we send this unified message".
"I said it was obsolete".
Russian Federation will be on the agenda and there were signs that "behind the scenes Trump is prepared to talk about things", Lewis said.
Moreover, though the White House had sent recent signals that the United States would stay in NATO's mutual defence pact, known as Article 5, Trump made no mention of it as he stood next a monument dedicated to the only time the article had been previously invoked: during the terror attacks on September 11, 2001.
I think you can expect the president to be very tough on them, saying: 'Look, the U.S. is spending 4 per cent. The American people are doing a lot for your security for our joint security.
He said the Afghan security forces are able to hold their own ground against insurgent attacks today and that this is on the back of the train, advise and assist approach taken since the drawdown of combat troops in 2014.
Mr Trump repeatedly complained about the financial burden that the United States takes on in ensuring the security of the alliance during his presidential campaign.
While it's not clear that he'll raise the issue in public, Trump will meet with several allies behind closed doors, including during a working dinner Thursday evening with all countries in the alliance.
Trump's speeches often remain in flux until the last minute, and he is well known for deviating from his prepared text by adding, removing or changing passages even as he reads them on the prompter.
Trump had alarmed the European Union by not only calling on more countries to follow Britain out of the exit door but also by calling it a vehicle for German dominance of the continent.
There's a nervousness pulsating among diplomats, foreign officials, and a smattering of foreign policy experts throughout Europe, who wonder what Trump will say, and how it will affect European security.