Pentagon calls allies to do ‘damage control’ after Trump NATO trip

World Leaders Meet For NATO Summit In Brussels

When asked if Trump said he would leave North Atlantic Treaty Organisation unless the wealthiest economies hit 2 percent GDP by January or "we are going to do our own thing", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders would not comment directly on the president's reported statements but insisted he didn't offer a new deadline for allies to meet the 2 percent standard.

It remains to be seen whether Trump really meant it about consistency, when it comes to soccer, however.

Stoltenberg acknowledged that Trump had expressed himself in "very direct language" but insisted that away from the fiery rhetoric the allies all agree on fundamental issues: the need to boost NATO's resilience, fight terror and share the cost of defence more equally.

That's "70 to 90 percent to protect Europe", said President Trump. He is also scheduled to hold his first summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, on July 16, 2018.

"That's all", said Macron, who also denied talk of Trump threatening to withdraw from the alliance. We have realized this since the attack on Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea.

Trump also joked about the topic - which prompted a year-long Russian Federation probe - as 'your favorite question'.

But the vehemence of Trump's on-camera breakfast attack on Germany for its backing of a second Nord Stream gas pipeline, and for being "captive" to Russian Federation came as a shock.

"We are not going to finance it for them but we will make sure that they are able to get payments and various other things so they can buy - because the United States makes by far the best military equipment in the world: the best jets, the best missiles, the best guns, the best everything".

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The summit's dramatic, chaotic conclusion - complete with the USA president suddenly making demands following a formal communique - bore a striking similarity to Trump's departure from last month's G7 meetings in Quebec.

USA lawmakers want Trump, both privately with Putin and publicly, to condemn Russia's actions.

Trump's repeated comments certainly go beyond the concerns raised by others.

At the press conference on Thursday, a Croatian reporter dared ask if Trump would change his mind once he leaves Brussels for London.

"So I would imagine that's what they will do, but maybe they will take a little bit of a different route. Yesterday I let them know that I was extremely unhappy with what was happening, and they have substantially upped their commitment".

Trump has touted the summit as an opportunity to reduce tensions, inflamed by Russia's annexation of the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine in 2014, its military backing of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, which turned the tide of the Syrian civil war in 2015, and accusations of Russian meddling in the 2016 USA election. We'll have more on President Trump, NATO, Russia and the protests in the United Kingdom after headlines. Apparently Donald Trump wants it to be more and he wants it now.

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.

The reason is that the 2 percent standard came from a collective defense agreement against a formidable foe (the Soviet Union) that doesn't exist anymore.

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