‘Strange and counterproductive’: Kerry slams Trump’s remarks at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit

President Trump took a confrontational stance with America's allies at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization summit Wednesday in Belgium, demanding allies double their upcoming commitment to defense spending and slamming Germany for getting gas from Russian Federation.

"Germany is totally controlled by Russia", Trump said in a searing critique over breakfast with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

"It's very sad when Germany makes a massive oil and gas deal with Russia where we're supposed to be guarding against Russia and Germany goes out and pays billions and billions of dollars a year to Russia", he said. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that the project is merely commercial, but the USA and other European Union members believe the pipeline could be a geopolitical incursion by Russian Federation. Trump made it clear he's exhausted of America shelling out more money on defense than its allies.

"Many countries are not paying what they should", Trump said.

'President Trump, who spoke first, raised the issue not only to achieve 2 percent, today, but a new barrier - 4 percent, ' Bulgarian President Rumen Radev told reporters, according to the wire service Reuters.

Germany invested 1.24 percent of its GDP in 2017 and estimated to do the same in 2018.

Yet Mr. Trump's criticism, which he has been repeating on Twitter for days, is uniquely poisonous.

With tensions in the Western alliance running high over Trump's trade tariffs on European steel and his demands for more contributions to ease the burden on US taxpayers, the latest remarks fuelled concerns among allies over the USA role in keeping the peace that has reigned since World War II. The organization is asking all member states spend a minimum 2 percent of their GDP on defensive measures by 2024.

Bloomberg omitted the part where Radev said that Trump spoke first and added a claim from the Bulgarian leader that the USA president left the meeting immediately after his own remarks.

In recent days, Trump has complained about a perceived lack of defense spending on the part of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members other than the USA, using figures that don't always add up.

"I subscribe the view that we shouldn't be criticizing our president when he's overseas", said House Speaker Paul Ryan.

Of Nato's 29 members, just five meet that target this year: the US, Greece, Estonia, the United Kingdom and Latvia.

By accusing a global rival of having unsavory ties with Russia-at the moment investigators are looking into the president's own unsavory ties with Russia-Trump is continuing his use of the so-called "boomerang insult", a strategy that seeks to deflects attacks against him on to his critics.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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