BRUSSELS (CBSNewYork) — President Donald Trump praised other nations paying more to support the NATO alliance as he wrapped up an often contentious summit in Europe.
On Thursday, Trump continued his push against Germany’s natural gas pipeline deal with Russia.
“Presidents have been trying unsuccessfully for years to get Germany and other rich NATO Nations to pay more toward their protection from Russia,” posted Trump. “They pay only a fraction of their cost. The U.S. pays tens of Billions of Dollars too much to subsidize Europe, and loses Big on Trade!”
“On top of it all, Germany just started paying Russia, the country they want protection from, Billions of Dollars for their Energy needs coming out of a new pipeline from Russia,” he said. “Not acceptable! All NATO Nations must meet their 2% commitment, and that must ultimately go to 4%!”
Trump took a more conciliatory tone during a talk Thursday, saying great progress had been made with the United States’ allies.
German officials deny that the controversial Nord Stream pipeline will allow Russia to exert undue influence over their country. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg tried to keep the peace.
“We are stronger together than apart,” Stoltenberg said.
“How can you be together when a country is getting its energy from the person you want protection against?” Trump responded.
“Because we understand that when we stand together, also in dealing with Russia, we are stronger,” Stoltenberg said.