Trump "insulted" by Macron's proposal for European army
Trump "insulted" by Macron's proposal for European army
European Army: Macron's Initiative is Taking Shape Step by Step
10 November, 2018, 08:43
The row over European Union defence risks overshadowing commemorations to be attended by 70 world leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
US President Donald Trump on Friday (Nov 9) blasted calls by Emmanuel Macron for a European army to defend against threats from powers including the US as "very insulting", setting a combative tone for his World War 1-themed visit to Paris.
The French president added that Europe also has to protect itself "with respect to China, Russia and even the United States of America".
Donald Trump has hit out at a call from French President Emmanuel Macron for the creation of a "European Army" to protect the continent from China, Russia and the United States - labelling the idea "insulting".
Trump's tweet just after landing in Paris that was highly critical of Macron is expected to strain the US-French relationship. Mr. Trump has railed against trade deals with the European Union and has criticized some EU nations, including France, for not spending enough to defense to sustain North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, the decades-old Western alliance formed as a bulwark to Moscow's aggression.
The "main victim" of the withdrawal, Macron argued, is "Europe and its security".
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European countries should contribute more money towards North Atlantic Treaty Organisation rather than ponder the "very insulting" prospect of a pan-European armed force, U.S. President Donald Trump said on Twitter on Friday.
The primary objective of the president's visit, according to the administration official, will be attending ceremonies around the centennial commemoration of the end of World War I.
Both Mr Trump and Mr Putin will be among the leaders attending that ceremony. "And we look forward to that", Trump told reporters on Friday before leaving the White House.
"It should be a very lovely period of time, the 100th anniversary of the ending of World War I. We have many countries - the leadership from many countries will be there, especially since they heard the United States will be there".
"We will not protect the Europeans unless we decide to have a true European army". The pair are expected to meet during the G-20 meeting later this month in Argentina, and the White House has invited Putin to visit Washington.
Trump and Macron also have extensive differences over trade and USA sanctions on Iran. Early this year, Trump had hosted Macron on the first State Dinner of his Administration. That now seems more likely for later this month, when they attend the Group of 20 summit of global leaders in Argentina.
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