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UK News Trump and Macron build bridges after diplomatic flare-up over Nato

20:30  03 december  2019
20:30  03 december  2019 Source:   msn.com

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© Jonathan Brady Donald Trump was engaged in a diplomatic flare - up with Emmanuel Macron over Nato (Jonathan Brady/PA). Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron have moved to build bridges after a diplomatic flare - up threatened to derail Nato talks hosted by Boris Johnson.

Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron have moved to build bridges after a diplomatic flare - up threatened to derail Nato talks hosted by Mr Macron in turn accepted the US had “ over -invested” in the alliance for “decade after decade” – a long-standing gripe of the US leader.

Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie: Donald Trump was engaged in a diplomatic flare-up with Emmanuel Macron over Nato (Jonathan Brady/PA) © Jonathan Brady Donald Trump was engaged in a diplomatic flare-up with Emmanuel Macron over Nato (Jonathan Brady/PA)

Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron have moved to build bridges after a diplomatic flare-up threatened to derail Nato talks hosted by Boris Johnson.

The US president earlier denounced a claim by Mr Macron that the alliance was suffering from “brain death” as “very insulting” to other member states.

But when the two men met later at the US ambassador’s residence in London, Mr Trump acknowledged the need for greater “flexibility” in the way in which Nato responded to global threats.

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After trading criticisms earlier in the day, Trump and Macron walked onto the road leading to 10 Downing Street together for a reception hosted by British Trump said the matter hadn't come up yet but jokingly asked Macron , "Would you like some nice ISIS fighters? Clashes over Turkey and Syria.

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Mr Macron in turn accepted the US had “over-invested” in the alliance for “decade after decade” – a long-standing gripe of the US leader.

Mr Macron’s original comments were prompted by the Turkish offensive against the Kurds in northern Syria – regarded by most Nato members as key allies in the fight against so-called Islamic State (IS).

He complained the US had effectively given the green light for the incursion – withdrawing its troops from the region – without any consultation with European allies, despite the wider consequences.

At a breakfast meeting with Nato secretary general Jens Stoltenberg, Mr Trump said it had been a “very, very nasty” statement by the French leader.

“Nobody needs Nato more than France,” he said. “That’s why I think when France makes a statement like they made about Nato, that’s a very dangerous statement for them to make.”

The Latest: Macron wants bigger Europe military role in NATO

  The Latest: Macron wants bigger Europe military role in NATO LONDON (AP) — The Latest on the NATO summit in London (all times local): 7:05 p.m. French President Emmanuel Macron said Europeans should play a greater role within the NATO military alliance in order to be less dependent on the United States. Macron said he wants “more European defense to get a less unbalanced NATO.” That came after he met with Turkish President Erdogan, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on the sidelines of a NATO summit. © Provided by Associated Press President Donald Trump meets French President Emmanuel Macron at Winfield House, Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019, in London.

Presidents Donald Trump and Emmanuel Macron clashed over Syria, Turkey and the future of Nato hours before what threatens to be a fractious 70th Leaders will then hold talks over subjects including terrorism and outer space on Wednesday morning. Diplomats say such brevity is aimed in part at

US President Donald Trump has arrived in the UK for NATO 's 70th Anniversary summit. The President arrived at Stansted Airport aboard Air Force One with First Lady Melania Trump .

Donald Trump in a suit and tie sitting at a table: Donald Trump (right) meeting with Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at the residence of the US ambassador (Jonathan Brady/PA) © Provided by PA Media Donald Trump (right) meeting with Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at the residence of the US ambassador (Jonathan Brady/PA)

When they met later, Mr Macron insisted he stood by his original remarks, while acknowledging US concerns that other allies had not borne their fair share of the financial burden for collective defence.

He cited the US unilateral withdrawal from the INF treaty with Russia banning medium range missiles as well as the threat of terrorism as reasons why “strategic clarification” was needed over the way Nato delivered long-term peace in Europe.

“The common enemy today are the terrorist groups. I am sorry to say that we don’t have the same definition of terrorist around the table,” he said.

“When I look at Turkey they are now fighting against those who fought with us against Isis and sometimes they work with Isis proxies.

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Suspects can be held up to 48 hours before being formally charged. In Kehl, Germany, traffic continued to move across the Europe Bridge that links France to Germany ahead of its closing and scores of police patrolled the area Trump and Macron build bridges after diplomatic flare - up over Nato .

“It is still an issue and it is a strategic issue. I do believe we need strategic clarification – how to deliver long term peace in Europe.”

Emmanuel Macron wearing a suit and tie talking on a cell phone: French President Emmanuel Macron arrives for talks in Downing Street (Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA) © Provided by PA Media French President Emmanuel Macron arrives for talks in Downing Street (Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA)

Mr Trump said they had had a “very good discussion”, and welcomed Mr Macron’s comments about financial burden-sharing.

“I appreciate you saying the United States for decades has really been paying proportionately way, way too much for Nato and other countries paying far too little,” he said.

He said they had both agreed on the need for more flexibility in the way that Nato operated.

“A lot of people say it was originally meant to look at the Soviet Union, now Russia, but we also have other things to look at whether it is radical Islamic terrorism, whether it is the tremendous growth of China,” he said.

The meeting of Nato leaders was being held to mark the alliance’s 70th anniversary.

Mr Johnson hosted talks with Mr Macron, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and German Chancellor Angela Merkel ahead of the main gathering in an attempt to iron out some of the differences between them.

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It came amid concern among European allies that the Turkish offensive in northern Syria had strengthened the position of Russia and of the Assad regime, while triggering another humanitarian crisis.

There was further alarm among alliance members when Mr Erdogan chose to purchase Russian air defence systems – seen as a further weakening of his commitment to the alliance.

Ahead of the talks, Downing Street said that Mr Johnson would use the meeting to appeal for alliance unity in the face of continuing strains.

“The PM will emphasise that all members must be united behind shared priorities so Nato can adapt to the challenges ahead,” the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said.

The formal Nato events will begin with a reception at Buckingham Palace hosted by the Queen on Tuesday evening.

The main talks will then take place on Wednesday at The Grove, a country house hotel near Watford.

The meeting is expected to consider new threats, including in the areas of cyber and space, after the alliance last month declared space one of its operational domains alongside air, land, sea and cyber.

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