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March 19, 2017

Germany rejects Trump claim it owes Nato and US ‘vast sums’ for defence

  • Defence minister Ursula von der Leyen rejects Trump’s tweeted claim
  • ‘No debt account to Nato’, minister says, explaining spending policy

The German defence minister, Ursula von der Leyen, on Sunday rejected Donald Trump’s claim that Germany owes Nato and the US “vast sums” of money for defence.

Related: 'That's not how it works': Trump's grasp of Nato questioned

 
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March 18, 2017

‘That’s not how it works’: Trump’s grasp of Nato questioned after Merkel tweets

President’s claim that Germany owes the US ‘vast sums of money’ shows a lack of understanding, says ex-Nato representative

On the heels of a visibly awkward visit from the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, Donald Trump said on Saturday that Germany owed “vast sums of money” to Nato and the US, even though the alliance does not stipulate payments to America.

Related: Angela Merkel and Trump can't hide [...]

 
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February 18, 2017

Mike Pence widens US rift with Europe over Nato defence spending

On first visit to Europe since taking office, US vice-president tells Munich conference Nato allies must step up their contributions

The US vice-president has delivered the most uncompromising message yet from the Trump administration to Nato allies that they have to step up financial contributions towards defence spending.

On his first visit to Europe since taking office, Mike Pence said “some of our largest allies do not have a credible path” towards paying their share of Nato’s financial burden. Although he did not name individual countries, his targets included Germany, France and Italy. “The time has come to do more,” he said.

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February 15, 2017

Mattis threatens Nato with reduced US commitment over defence spending

Trump’s defence secretary tells allies that US could moderate its commitment to Nato unless allies raise their spending on common defence

The US defence secretary has told America’s Nato allies that they must honour military spending pledges to ensure the US does not “moderate” its support for the alliance.

“I owe it to you to give you clarity on the political reality in the United States, and to state the fair demand from my country’s people in concrete terms,” said General James Mattis during closed door talks in Brussels, where he was speaking on his first visit to Europe since taking up his job.

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