French top diplomat reassures Russian Federation that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation not its enemy

French Foreign Minister Jean Yves Le Drian

French Foreign Minister Jean Yves Le Drian

"I'm a very stable genius".

But he said that since a year ago around an additional 33 billion dollars, not including the United States, had been raised and it was now "unnecessary" to withdraw from the organisation.

"We took in $33 billion more", Trump said, pointing to increased financial commitments.

"If we can do something to substantially reduce them, I mean, ideally get rid of them, maybe that's a dream, but certainly it's a subject that I'll be bringing up with him", Trump said of his upcoming meeting with Putin.

Trump had opened the first day of talks in Brussels on Wednesday with a public diatribe against Germany, the second biggest state in the Western defence alliance, before the mood appeared to have calmed as the summit went into its second day, focusing on operations beyond Europe.

President Donald Trump capped off his tumultuous two-day visit at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation headquarters on Thursday by boldly declaring that all North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members agreed to increase their defense spending after he told them he was "extremely unhappy".

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But French President Emmanuel Macron Thursday rejected Trump's assertion.

Asked about Trump's suggestion, Stoltenberg said he'll focus on what's been agreed to. "It reaffirms a commitment to 2 percent in 2024".

Instead, a series of events - a black-tie dinner with business leaders, a meeting with May and an audience with Queen Elizabeth - will happen outside the bustling city, where Mayor Sadiq Khan has been in a verbal battle with Trump.

Trump has taken an aggressive tone during the summit, questioning the value of a military alliance that has defined decades of American foreign policy, torching an ally and proposing a massive increase in European defence spending.

Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite told reporters she's comfortable with the Trump-Putin summit, but it "depends very much on outcomes".

May's office said it would not comment on The Sun article during a greeting when Trump met May at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst to review a military exercise.

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This, from someone who has never criticized Russian Federation for its seizure and annexation of the Crimean peninsula in the Ukraine, and denying that their troops were in Eastern part of that country.

When asked how he planned to fix the situation, Trump said: "If I knew, I wouldn't tell you, because that would put us at a disadvantage". The important thing now is that we need to invest more - we need to get more money.

Trump said, "I let them (NATO leaders) know that I was extremely unhappy".

FORDHAM: I don't think from speaking to diplomats there that people thought it was likely, but just the suggestion that it might be possible did definitely make people nervous. "It's very detailed", Macron said, according to the AP. "We urge Russian Federation to cease all political, financial and military support to militant groups and stop intervening militarily in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions and to withdraw troops, equipment and mercenaries from the territory of Ukraine".

Trump also sought to claim a victory in his news conference on Wednesday, defending his the hard-nose tactics he displayed at the summit, which included accusing Germany of being "totally controlled" and "a captive of Russian Federation".

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.

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Trump has spent weeks berating members of the alliance for failing to spend enough of their money on defence, accusing Europe of freeloading off the USA and raising doubts about whether he would come to members' defence if they were ever attacked.

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