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UK News Trump off to London for NATO summit, under pressure to steer clear of British election

22:50  01 december  2019
22:50  01 december  2019 Source:   reuters.com

Trump to meet Macron, Merkel at NATO summit

  Trump to meet Macron, Merkel at NATO summit WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House says President Donald Trump will meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron on the sidelines of next week’s NATO summit in London. The summit comes at a critical moment for the 29-member military alliance, which has been fraying in the face of Trump’s complaints that too many NATO members are spending too little on defense. Trump also has meetings scheduled during the summit with Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen and Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte.The summit is scheduled Tuesday and Wednesday.Trump has no meeting scheduled, as of now, with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the summit host.

Boris Johnson, Donald Trump are posing for a picture: FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump meets with British Prime Minister Johnson on sidelines of U.N. General Assembly in New York City © Reuters/Jonathan Ernst FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump meets with British Prime Minister Johnson on sidelines of U.N. General Assembly in New York City

By Steve Holland

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump leaves on Monday for a NATO summit in London and he is under pressure from British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to resist the temptation to wade into the British election campaign coming up later in December.

As a presidential candidate in 2016 and then as president since early 2017, Trump has shown no restraint in showing support for Britain's exit from the European Union and critiquing the politicians involved in the country's long-running Brexit debate.

Turkey threatens to block NATO plan on summit eve

  Turkey threatens to block NATO plan on summit eve Turkey threatens to block NATO plan on summit eveLONDON (Reuters) - Turkey will oppose a NATO plan to defend Baltic countries unless the alliance backs it in recognising a Kurdish militia as a terrorist group, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday ahead of an alliance summit in London.

But with Johnson leading polls as he faces Dec. 12 elections, the prime minister who is hosting the London NATO summit wants Trump to mind the guard-rails, putting Trump in the unusual position of trying to avoid his normal impulse to comment on whatever he wishes.

Boris Johnson et al. standing next to a man in a suit and tie: FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump meets with British Prime Minister Johnson on sidelines of U.N. General Assembly in New York City © Reuters/Jonathan Ernst FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump meets with British Prime Minister Johnson on sidelines of U.N. General Assembly in New York City

Trump waded into the election in October by saying opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn would be “so bad” for Britain and that Johnson should agree on a pact with Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage.

Johnson's pressure prompted the White House to stress, as a senior administration official said, that Trump "is absolutely cognizant of not, again, wading into other country's elections."

Boris Johnson will NOT hold official talks with Donald Trump despite President being in the UK for Nato summit after fears it would tarnish his election bid

  Boris Johnson will NOT hold official talks with Donald Trump despite President being in the UK for Nato summit after fears it would tarnish his election bid The prospect of Donald Trump's visit has been a nightmare for Tory strategists, who fear that one misplaced comment or Tweet could damage Boris Johnson's electoral fortunes.Mr Trump arrived in the UK tonight ahead of a two-day summit of Nato leaders, starting tomorrow.

That strategy could be put to the test as Trump faces reporters a number of times on the trip, including at what is expected to be a news conference on Wednesday.

The NATO summit takes place as Trump battles an effort led by Democrats who control the U.S. House of Representatives to force his removal from office through impeachment over his pressure on Ukraine to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden.

The impeachment imbroglio has overshadowed Trump's presidency as he looks ahead to his own re-election fight next November.

Trump, who got back to the United States on Friday from a whirlwind trip to Afghanistan, arrives in London on Monday night for two days of meetings with NATO leaders gathered for the summit.

He will have separate talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and attend a working lunch with representatives from Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Lithuania, Bulgaria, and the United Kingdom. U.S. officials see the NATO summit as a celebratory moment for Trump as his pressure on member nations has led many to increase their military spending.

He is expected to seek support from member nations to increase pressure on China for what the United States sees as Beijing's expansionist policies.

"China is actively seeking a great presence and more influence across the globe, including in NATO's area of responsibility," said a senior administration official.

(Reporting By Steve Holland; Editing by Nick Zieminski)

Trump calls Trudeau 'two-faced' at NATO summit as candid chat goes viral .
NATO leaders professed unity on Wednesday at a summit near London — but a spat over off-the-cuff chit chat at a royal reception rattled their show of solidarity. U.S. President Donald Trump branded the leader of America’s northern neighbor “two-faced” after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appeared to gossip about Trump in comments caught on camera and microphone. Trudeau was seen standing in a huddle with French President Emmanuel Macron, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Britain’s Princess Anne, daughter of Queen Elizabeth II, at Tuesday evening’s Buckingham Palace reception for NATO leaders.

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