North Atlantic Treaty Organisation turns its focus on Afghanistan after Trump's harsh criticism day before

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation turns its focus on Afghanistan after Trump's harsh criticism day before

Several current U.S. officials and other former officials and advisers with direct knowledge said the White House had not yet formally ordered the review, but they were preparing for a government-wide appraisal in the next few months. "It was a little tough for a little while".

Dr. Claudia Major, a researcher at the German Institute for International Security affairs, said that Germany, in particular, does more for the alliance than spend on its own defense, including deploying troops to Afghanistan, "and eventually, two percent is an arbitrary measurement that does not say much about efficiency and output".

Macron and others said they did not interpret Trump's words as a direct threat to quit the alliance Washington founded in 1949 to contain Soviet expansion.

Trump claimed member nations had agreed to significantly boost their defence budgets and reaffirmed - after days of griping that the USA was being taken advantage of by its allies - that the US remains faithful to the accord.

Officials said Trump has shown signs of frustration over the lack of progress since he unveiled a strategy last August that committed to an open-ended deployment of US military advisers, trainers and special forces and increased air support for Afghan security forces. The extra troops will be taking part in a NATO-led training mission, called Resolute Support, to train and assist Afghan forces.

"President Trump's performance at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels was disappointing, yet ultimately unsurprising", McCain said.

"NATO is as vital today as it ever has been and our commitment to it remains steadfast", May said Tuesday, according to Reuters. It has created a new sense of urgency.

"A clear message from President Trump is having an impact".

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U.S. President Donald Trump arrives for a dinner at the Parc du Cinquantenaire during the NATO Summit in Brussels, Belgium July 11, 2018.

Trump told leaders he wanted them all to hit that target by January, prompting consternation.

"What's more surprising, the fact that the President Trump is calling them out on that or that previous presidents haven't?" he asked.

"The American president demanded what has been discussed for months, that there is a change in the burden sharing", Merkel said. "I made clear that we are on this path".

Woody Johnson, the USA ambassador to the United Kingdom, dismissed the significance of the protests, telling Fox News that one of the reasons the two countries are so close "is because we have the freedoms that we've all fought for". "It confirms the goal of 2 percent by 2024".

The U.S. spends about 3.5 percent of GDP on defense, far higher than other member states.

Trump's biggest target for criticism, Germany, predicts that it will be spending 1.5 per cent of GDP on its military budget by 2024.

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.

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