Macron snubs U.S. arms in defence spat with Trump

French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes US President Donald Trump as he arrives at the Elysee Palace in Paris

But Mr. Trump, a leader who has proudly declared himself a "nationalist" and advocated an "America First" approach, stood out at a memorial ceremony that focused on worldwide cooperation.

Turkish nationals holding signs honoring the president greeted the president and first lady as they arrived at the Peninsula Hotel in the French capital.

President Trump did not attend the forum, instead visiting the Suresnes American Cemetery and Memorial outside of Paris before returning to Washington.

The president did not show an immediate reply, sitting quietly, often with his head down during Macron's speech.

French officials, however, say - without elaborating - there was a misunderstanding by Trump about Macron's comments, noting the USA president told his French counterpart in their Saturday meeting: "I think we are much closer than it seems".

"When people feel their institutions can't protect them, they look for easy answers in populism, in nationalism, in closing borders, in shutting down trade, in xenophobia".

Donald Trump has been resoundingly criticized for not taking the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I seriously.

Macron however told CNN that while he and Trump had things in common - notably their rise to power as outside candidates - their outlook on the world was very different.

"Old demons are reawakening, ready to sow chaos and death", he said, warning of how ideology, religion and a disregard for facts could be exploited.

Sunday's address also contained a number of historic rebukes, such as a subtle reference to a well-known 1927 French book that decried the elites at the time, who embraced reactionary, nationalistic ideologies at the expense of a rational consensus.

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During the dinner, Erdoğan met Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani.

"There is a general sense and desire among many countries, including Canada to do whatever is possible to sustain the institutions of the worldwide order and practical, multilateral co-operation".

A White House statement said the president's visit was canceled because of scheduling and logistical difficulties caused by the weather.

Russian officials said the French had been the ones to ask that no separate Trump-Putin meeting be arranged Sunday in order not to distract from the solemn commemorations. Trump is scheduled to visit another military cemetery before departing Sunday.

More than 66 leaders gathered on a rainy day in Paris a century after guns fell silent in a global war that killed millions.

"If you're not backed up by the highest political authority, nothing will happen", Kareen Rispal said in an interview Friday. Trump's eagerness to get along with the Russian leader - in spite of Russia's meddling in the 2016 election and numerous other aggressive moves in recent years - has alarmed those who view Russia as a growing threat.

World leaders gathered in Paris on Sunday to mark 100 years since the end of World War I, with French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and United Nations chief Antonio Guterres each warning that rising nationalism again poses a threat to peace.

Paris, the site of repeated militant attacks since 2015, had mobilised some 10,000 police for an event also attended by Canada's Justin Trudeau, Israel's Benjamin Netanyahu and Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The global conflict originated in Europe, killing an estimated 8.5 million soldiers, and injuring 21 million more. About 172,000 more were injured.

Amid growing divisions in Europe that have strained the European Union, Macron defended that institution, along with the United Nations, and declared that the "spirit of cooperation" has "defended the common good of the world". With files from the Associated Press.

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