Trump 'insulted' by Macron's call for European army

Trump 'insulted' by Macron's call for European army

US President Donald Trump on Friday took a jab at French President Emmanuel Macron for his proposal to build up a European army to counter threats from global powers, including the US.

The US president tweeted after arriving in Paris ahead of an global commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the armistice that ended the First World War.

"Very insulting, but perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, which the USA subsidizes greatly", Trump said on Twitter as he arrived in France to meet with Macron.

The French President attempted to defend his renewed call for a united European defence by stating his intention is to "share the burden" of NATO's capability with America.

French President Emmanuel Macron clasps hands with U.S. President Donald Trump at the conclusion of their joint news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, April 24, 2018.

On Saturday morning, Macron and Trump will hold bilateral talks on issues expected to include Syria and Iran before lunching with Melania and Macron's wife Brigitte.

His comments comes after Macron warned that Europeans can no longer rely on the United States to defend them.


Trump also sought to parallel the controversy to Russia's efforts to meddle in the 2016 election, saying sarcastically, "Let's blame the Russians and demand an immediate apology from President Putin!"

Macron's office said Trump had misunderstood the French president's comments. Trump added that he and Macron are "getting along from the standpoint of fairness". "Is there anything better to celebrate than the end of a war, in particular that one, which was one of the bloodiest and worst of all time?" the President asked in a tweet.

"And we look forward to that", Mr. Trump told reporters Friday before leaving the White House.

France is the strongest and most vocal proponent of an European Union army but Germany has also tentatively endorsed Mr Macron's proposals for a joint command structure for military interventions.

"I've seen what they have planned, and I think it's going to be something very, very special".

Trump's talks with Macron at the Elysee are likely to cover European concerns about Trump's plans to withdraw the United States from the 1980s Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Agreement and US renewal of sanctions against Iran. It was an Armistice- that is they stopped fighting because the whole world was exhausted.

Macron will meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the site, in a visit symbolising the close ties between two countries that fought three wars between 1870 and 1945.

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