Trump gears up for meeting with "competitor" Putin after rocky North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit

NATO leaders family

"I believe in Nato", Mr Trump told a press conference after a fraught Nato summit in Brussels.

At the end of the first session of a two-day summit, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the aim first was to reach 2 percent, but moments later Trump tweeted that allies were undercutting the U.S. on trade and needed to immediately boost spending.

FORDHAM: Absolutely. I think that's part of the reason that Trump was light on details and part of the reason that the secretary general in his press conference right now was light on details.

"I let them know that I was extremely unhappy", an ebullient Trump told reporters afterwards. "We committed ourselves to spending a bit more".

After a tense first day, Trump didn't ease up on the second.

At the same breakfast (and on several other occasions later in the day), Trump blasted German Chancellor Angela Merkel for an energy deal her country has with Russian Federation, saying they are "totally controlled by Russian Federation", and a "captive" of the country. But not before Merkel and other top officials in the German government had publicly fired back at Trump's breakfast diatribe.

Trump's boasts of achievement have come under question before.

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"The problem is Trump seems to really see no benefit that allies provide the United States", says James Goldgeier, visiting senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

"On top of it all, Germany just started paying Russian Federation, the country they want protection from, Billions of Dollars for their Energy needs coming out of a new pipeline from Russian Federation", read another. When asked if Trump said he would leave North Atlantic Treaty Organisation unless the wealthiest economies hit 2 percent GDP by January or "we are going to do our own thing", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders would not comment directly on the president's reported statements but insisted he didn't offer a new deadline for allies to meet the 2 percent standard. "We need that to get more in balance", retired U.S. Navy Admiral James Stavridis said in an interview with host Vassy Kapelos on CBC News Network's Power & Politics Thursday.

Currently, all leaders were in a "confused state" because everyone was wondering what the condition for the four per cent meant, and the extent to which Trump was serious, Radev said. ". It is up to President Trump to hold Putin accountable for his actions during the meeting in Helsinki".

But he reiterated his demand that USA allies spend more on defense.

Since then eight of the 29 allies have managed to achieve the 2 per cent level, and a majority have budget plans to reach it by 2024.

"We made a tremendous amount of progress today", he said. In fact, USA allies plan to increase spending by $11 billion this year.

Thursday, Trump had said, "I think they like me a lot in the U.K".

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Trump reportedly went into the summit urging other members to bump that up to 4 percent.

At Thursday's press conference, he repeated an incorrect claim that the United States "pays for 70 to 90% of NATO".

"I'm a very stable genius", he said. Of the alliance, he said it was "very unified, very strong, no problem".

He reportedly continued by warning that if the alliance's wealthiest economies weren't paying 2% by January, then the United States "are going to do our own thing". It will be Trump's first working visit to the United Kingdom since he became President, and massive protests in London are expected.

Trump is in London, where his day will start with a viewing of a military demonstration before he heads to meetings with British Prime Minister Theresa May at Chequers, May's county house. Not fair to the USA taxpayer.

And, a reminder, that for all the insults thrown and the agreements threatened over the past few years, seldom has Mr Putin caught the ire of Mr Trump. It was also reported that Trump asked Macron privately to leave the World Trade Organization.

Trump's trip to Britain will test the bonds of the USA and U.K.'s special relationship. The Lithuania defense minister, who was speaking at a (unintelligible) event yesterday said, I regard this as something in the family.

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