French President Emmanuel Macron and US President Donald Trump have called for greater European engagement in NATO. Before a bilateral meeting at the Elysee Palace, Macron said: „It is unfair that European security is guaranteed today only by the United States. That’s why I believe we need more European capacity, more European defense. „Trump also called for a fairer burden-sharing within NATO.
„We want it to be fair“
So far, the burden is mainly on the US, said Trump. „We want it to be fair.“ The US wanted to continue its commitment. „But other countries have to help too. And the President and I agree very much. „Macron added,“ If President Trump needs to protect or defend a United States state, he does not ask France or Germany or any other government in Europe to fund it. “
Macron said, „I share President Trump’s view that we need a much better burden-sharing within NATO. And that is why I believe that my proposals for European defense are fully in line with this, because that means more Europe within NATO. “
Macron had previously spoken out in favor of building a European army for protection against Russia. Trump had criticized the night after his arrival in Paris. „Very hurtful,“ Trump wrote on Twitter. „Perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of NATO, which will greatly subsidize the US!“
President Macron of France has just announced that Europe is building its own military in order to protect itself from the US, China and Russia. Very insulting, but perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of NATO, which is the United States. Subsidies greatly!
– Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 9 November 2018
„Very good friends“
Trump said at the meeting that he and Macron had become „very good friends“ in recent years. „We have a lot in common.“ Macron called Trump „my good friend.“
Trump said his visit will also be about the trade dispute with the EU. „I think we have made great progress.“ Now it must be about to come to an agreement. Macron said they will also talk about the escalating conflict between the US and Iran and the wars in Syria and Yemen.
Memory with Merkel in Compiegne
In the afternoon, Macron commemorates German chancellor Angela Merkel near the town of Compiegne as the end of the First World War 100 years ago. The truce had been signed on November 11, 1918 in a converted dining car in a clearing. At the place there is a memorial.
About 60 heads of state and government are expected in the French capital this weekend, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Austria is represented by Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen. The highlight will be tomorrow a big commemoration on the Parisian triumphal arch.
Macron docks in the EU election to liberals
On the eve of the celebrations, after weeks of speculation, an important decision was announced for the EU’s election next May: Macron’s En-Marche movement will form an alliance with the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE).