Hunt backs Trump's call for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation countries to increase spending

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The US president said he would be discussing Syria, the Middle East, Ukraine and nuclear proliferation.

Trump jolted a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels on Thursday, saying in his closing remarks that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members had agreed to "up their commitment" and dedicate four percent of their GDP to defense instead of the current two percent. "It's been fantastic to see the level of spirit in that room".

Trump is reported to have spoken of "grave consequences" if allies did not meet their 2 percent of GDP defense spending targets, saying that the United States could "go our own way" if his demands were not met.

Since last year's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit allies had added $US41bn to their budgets, he said, and now they would redouble their efforts.

Officials at the meeting said Trump had shocked many present and broke with diplomatic protocol by addressing German Chancellor Merkel by her first name, telling her: "Angela, you need to do something about this".


Just eight countries are forecast to reach the two per cent goal this year, and 15 by 2024.

In an apparent swipe at Trump, he added: "Sometimes the corridors, comments and tweets take on more importance than what is negotiated, said or endorsed by heads of state". One notable but often forgotten example is that Trump's son, Donald Trump Jr., called the claims of Russian Federation hacking the DNC "phony" and "lies" on July 11, 2016.

In Trump's telling, unity was ultimately restored by a new commitment he wrung out of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation partners to increase their military spending to relieve pressure on the US budget.

Member states had already agreed, dating back in 2014, to increase their base level defense spending to 2 percent.

"And on that matter, for example, I think it's fair to say that maybe some point down the line there might be a UK-US trade agreement, but it's not going to happen any time soon because our focus is in negotiating with a big bloc, the European Union, to get a trade agreement done", Obama said in a joint appearance in London with then-PM David Cameron. President Trump asserted that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members would be increasing spending because of him - again, false. And so the president has directly intervened in British politics in the most unhelpful way.


Trump is due to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin - who has denied election meddling - in Helsinki on Monday for a summit that includes a one-on-one meeting with only interpreters present.

"Start treating Putin like you do with the Democrats - tough, strong, 'we're not going to take your nonsense", he said. And the administration's broader policy toward Russian Federation is harsher than the rhetoric employed by Trump, who recently suggested that Moscow be readmitted to what is now the Group of Seven, since Russian Federation was kicked out of the bloc of industrialized countries for annexing Crimea from Ukraine.

"These revelations add to a body of evidence confirming an extensive plot by Vladimir Putin's government to attack the 2016 election, sow chaos and dissension among the American electorate, and undermine faith in our democracy,"McCain said in a statement on Friday".

TRUMP, speaking Friday after a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit marked by his scorching rhetoric and capped by a contentious emergency meeting: "There was a lot of love in that room". Does it benefit the U.S.in any way? "Germany just started paying Russian Federation, the country they want protection from, Billions of Dollars for their Energy needs coming out of a new pipeline from Russian Federation".


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