Trump lashes Germany over Russian Federation deal

Thursday, 12 Jul, 2018

In recent months Trump has repeatedly launched invective at America´s partners in the Atlantic alliance, a cornerstone of European security since World War II, accusing them of freeloading on the U.S. for defense.

"The pipeline gets cheap Russian gas to Germany while bypassing smaller Eastern European nations, allowing Russia to pressure them while Germany is held harmless", he tweeted, adding: "No amount of preening in Berlin will cover this nakedly selfish policy".

"They made tremendous success and I believe our trade will increase and lots of other things but we will see what happens over the next few months".

Despite the friendly rhetoric, U.S. -Russia relations have soured since Trump's presidency.

Asked about Mr Trump's suggestion, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said he would focus on what has been agreed to. Tim Kaine, D-Va. "I'm very anxious".

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies shrugged off the demand as part and parcel of Trump's brash push for allies to spend more on their own defence at a summit in Brussels, with a quip from the alliance's chief that it should aim to meet its goal before reaching further. I am very happy that today we are united in freedom, the Federal Republic of Germany. The vast undersea pipeline is opposed by the US and some other European Union members, who warn it could give Moscow greater leverage over Western Europe.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said, "We should first get to two percent", adding that eight of the 29 allies were meeting that target.

Her endorsement of the Trump-Putin meeting attempts to cut off awkward questions about Trump's commitment to Nato, an organisation he has openly and repeatedly criticised, which has dogged the ongoing Nato summit and threatened to undermine Trump's visit to London later this week.

However, Trump would "do better to lower the decibel levels in public", Burns said in a " Squawk Box " interview. "We're supposed to protect you against Russian Federation but they're paying billions of dollars to Russian Federation and I think that's very inappropriate".

He said that German Chancellor Angela Merkel runs the nation that is the "de facto leader of the EU" and that its failure to "properly fund NATO" should be criticized.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said he thinks the president is "right about Germany buying gas from the Russians, that's counterproductive".

The unexpected demand from Trump during a closed-door meeting of heads of state laid down a new, virtually unachievable marker for a peacetime military spending in an alliance already struggling to meet current defense spending commitments.

"We have a very, very good relationship with the chancellor".

By slapping higher tariffs on European Union metals experts and threatening more on cars, Trump has shown his anger at the US trade deficit with the European Union.

The feud over defense spending looks set to overshadow other business at the two-day summit.