Relations with Germany Are 'tremendous'

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By pointing out the close connections between Germany and Russian Federation on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, and the degree to which they depend on each other financially, Trump was borrowing a page from his critics who suggest that because of Russia's interference in the 2016 election on his behalf, he is beholden to Putin.

Meanwhile, President Trump is singling out Germany for not paying its fair share on defense while dolling out hundreds of millions of dollars to Russian Federation for energy.

What did Trump say about Germany?

Speaking at a press conference in Brussels ahead of the two-day summit, Trump complained that Russian Federation enjoyed undue influence over Germany thanks to "inappropriate" oil and gas deals.

According to the declaration, all Allies have started to increase the amount they spend on defense in real terms and some two-thirds of Allies have national plans in place to spend 2 percent of their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on defense by 2024.


On the afternoon of July 11, Trump discussed Nord Stream 2 with German Chancellor Angela Merkel but did not elaborate on the details.

Previous US presidents have urged Europe to take more responsibility for their defence and reduce the burden on US taxpayers of maintaining forces in Europe long after the end of the Cold War - but none as bluntly as Mr Trump.

President Donald Trump had an awkward photo moment at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels on Wednesday, standing around by himself as he and the other leaders gathered for an official picture.

EU President Donald Tusk stepped up to the fight with his own salvo against Trump on Tuesday, telling him to "appreciate your allies" and reminding him Washington that Europe had come to its aid following the 9/11 attacks. The criticism and proposal dominated headlines with leaders, including Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, widely accepting the complaint of unequality and pledging to spend more.

Asked about Trump's suggestion, Stoltenberg said he'll focus on what's been agreed to.


"I think it's very sad when Germany makes a massive oil and gas deal with Russia when you're supposed to be guarding against Russia and Germany goes out and pays billions and billions of dollars a year to Russia", Trump told NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.

"I myself have also experienced a part of Germany being controlled by the Soviet Union", she said.

However, Trump would "do better to lower the decibel levels in public", Burns said in a " Squawk Box " interview. The pipeline is opposed by the USA and some EU members, including European Council President Donald Tusk.

Freeland said she had a "good conversation" with the Danish foreign minister because the pipeline "is an issue that touches very much on Denmark". "So adding Nord Stream 2 is not adding a new capability of supplying gas that doesn't exist", Kurt Volcker, the USA special representative for Ukraine negotiations, said on May 24.

"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".


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