Donald Trump says Nato is no longer obsolete as he threatens to claw back money from alliance members who have 'underpaid'

As a candidate in the presidential election, US President said the bloc had outlived its usefulness

Tom Batchelor
Wednesday 12 April 2017 21:05
Comments
Donald Trump says NATO is no longer obsolete

Donald Trump has said Nato is no longer obsolete in an about-turn on previous comments that the military alliance no longer served a purpose.

The US President, who is hosting the Nato secretary-general for talks in Washington, thanked the member states of the bloc for condemning the Syria chemical attack.

But he also said they were still not paying their fair share of the Nato budget and told Jens Stoltenberg he would be seeking to claw back money from states that he said had underpaid in the past.

"I said it was obsolete. It's no longer obsolete," Trump said, adding that the transatlantic alliance was adapting to the broader mission against Isis.

Mr Trump thanked Nato members for their support of his decision last Thursday to launch 59 cruise missiles at a Syrian airfield in retaliation for a chemical weapons attack on civilians and said it was time to end Syria's civil war.

Mr Stoltenberg said he had an excellent and productive meeting in the Oval Office with Trump.

James Mattis says Putin's threat to Nato is biggest threat since WWII

As a candidate in the presidential election, Mr Trump said the 28-member organisation had outlived its usefulness.

Since taking office, he has expressed support for Nato but has reinforced his view that European members must meet a 2014 agreement for member countries to boost defense spending to 2 per cent of GDP within a decade.

Only the US and a handful of other countries are meeting the target.

He said Nato countries would be more secure and the partnership strengthened if other countries stopped relying on America.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in