President Trump Reportedly Threatened to Pull the U.S. Out of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation

Trump lashes out at NATO allies calling for increase in defence spending

The NATO communique says that two-thirds of countries have plans to meet the spending target by 2024, and that, "all Allies have started to increase the amount they spend on defence in real terms".

"I [also] want to delve into Vladimir Putin and what he wants for his country", said Wallace, who last interviewed Putin in September 2005.

Following the summit, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg was careful not to contradict the president's claim of a substantial increase in spending but was only able to directly point to members' existing 2 percent commitments. He claimed in a press conference that "Yesterday I let allies know I was extremely unhappy with what was happening".

"I let them know I was extremely unhappy with what was happening and they have substantially upped their commitment and now we're very happy and have a very, very powerful, very very strong North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, much stronger than it was two days ago", Trump said in a freewheeling press conference.

Speaking after a two-day summit in Brussels, he said allies had committed to spending more than 2% of their annual output (GDP) on defence budgets.

In an apparent swipe at Trump, he added: "Sometimes the corridors, comments and tweets take on more importance than what is negotiated, said or endorsed by heads of state".

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"The US pays tens of Billions of Dollars too much to subsidise Europe, and loses Big on Trade!" As to whether he could unilaterally pull the USA out of the alliance without congressional approval, Trump said, "I think I probably can, but that's not necessary".

At NATO's 2014 summit in Wales, in the face of new Russian aggression and the annexation of Crimea, the allies had pledged to increase investments in defence and move towards investing 2 per cent of their GDP in collective security.

According to the report, "In 2017, the USA accounted for 51.1 percent of NATO's combined GDP and 71.7 percent of its combined defense expenditure. You just feel it kind of creaking in the wake of the commentary from President Trump".

The Nato leaders, gathered in Brussels, held an unplanned emergency meeting earlier on Thursday after Mr Trump told allies to immediately increase their defence spending, diplomatic sources said. Many have already settled their 2019 budgets and the sums involved are enormous - even if they wanted to, many would struggle to make useful purchases. On Thursday, Trump said he wasn't troubled by the planned protests.

"I am very glad that we are united today in freedom as the Federal Republic of Germany and that we can therefore also make our own independent policies and make our own independent decisions".

"Germany is totally controlled by Russia because they will be getting 60-70 percent of their energy from Russia and a new pipeline", Trump said to reporters Wednesday morning, calling the alleged dependence on Russian energy "inappropriate".

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