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France's Macron says NATO allies stuck to spending commitments

AFP  |  Brussels 

French today said that NATO's spending commitments remained the same despite US counterpart saying he had forced allies to increase them at a tense summit.

said NATO was nevertheless "much stronger" and that Trump had, contrary to reports, never told his fellow leaders that the could withdraw from the alliance.

"Trump knows that the has been able to find NATO at key moments in its history... I think that NATO is a good thing for the United States," the French leader said, adding that the US was a "great partner, a great ally for us."

Trump had "reaffirmed his commitment to a strong NATO".

"As with all our summits, sometimes the corridors, comments and tweets take on more importance than what is negotiated, said or endorsed by heads of state," said.

"I believe only one thing: the communique we have approved, the strategy we defend and the seriousness we have, because it is the security of our people we are talking about," he added.

Trump said there had been "tremendous progress" at the summit after he pushed NATO leaders on the issue, and that NATO countries were going to increase their commitments to "levels they've never thought of before."

But Macron responded that "the communique is clear: it reaffirms the commitment to two percent (of GDP on defence spending) for 2024."

Trump had asked for the two per cent figure to happen immediately, and for it eventually to be doubled to four per cent.

Asked about Trump's criticisms of Germany, Macron said that and had a "joint destiny" and that was an "indispensable partner" for

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, July 12 2018. 19:20 IST