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World leaders tense over Trump arrival in London for NATO summit



US President, Donald Trump, arrived in London late on Monday evening to attend the Nato summit.

US President, Donald Trump, arrived in London late on Monday evening to attend the NATO summit. The leaders of the NATO members would be hosted by Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday. The event, which marks the 70th anniversary of NATO, would begin in Watford on Wednesday.

During his three-day visit to the United Kingdom, Trump would have separate talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. Besides, the US President would also be part of a working lunch with leaders from Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Lithuania, Bulgaria, and the UK.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization, a military alliance, was signed in 1949 with an aim to limit Soviet expansionism after World War II. The group includes the United States, Canada, and ten European countries.

What makes world leaders tense about Trump’s attending the event is his attitude towards the defense alliance. His commitment to the alliance seemed shaky as last year while attending its annual summit in Brussels, Trump called NATO ‘obsolete’.

Trump has also questioned the relevance of the alliance in the past. In March 2016, during a meeting with the Washington Post editorial board, Trump said, “NATO was set up at a different time” and it’s “costing us a fortune”. US pays 22 percent of NATO’s total costs, which in 2017 amount to around $2 billion.

Last year, around the same time, Trump voiced his disappointment in the alliance through a tweet, calling NATO’s arrangement for the United States an ‘unfair one’. He also called the member nations (especially Germany) “delinquent” for not spending enough on their own defense.

Trump has been openly critical of the member nations for not paying their due share for the alliance’s defense expenditure. Trump sent letters to several NATO countries including Canada, Belgium, Germany, and Norway — condemning them for shunning away from their responsibility. To help the alliance run effective, the member nations have to spend at least 2% of their GDP on defense by 2024.

In a recent conversation, French President Emmanuel Macron expressed his worry over the lack of US’s active role in the alliance, which he felt was causing NATO’s “brain death”.

On Monday, US Democratic presidential candidate, Joe Biden, warned that Trump’s coming back to power after 2020 elections would mean NATO’s effective dissolution. Biden jokingly said that he would “say a prayer” as the president’s heads to the UK for the NATO summit. Trump told reporters that during his trip, he would focus on “fighting for the American people”.


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