Trump says added North Atlantic Treaty Organisation funds not enough for U.S.

U.S. Ambassador to NATO Kay Bailey Hutchison appears on

He's unhappy that some countries are still not meeting the goal of spending 2% of their GDP on defence, and has raised questions about America's continued commitment to the military alliance.

U.S. President Donald Trump is greeted by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg before a bilateral breakfast ahead of the NATO Summit in Brussels, Belgium July 11, 2018.

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation officials had been nervously awaiting the first meeting as an indicator of how Trump, who arrived in Brussels on Tuesday night, was going to behave over the next two days.

He added: "NATO countries must pay MORE, the United States must pay LESS".

Previous US presidents also urged greater defence spending from European nations.

Trump alarmed allies during a visit to Brussels a year ago when he did not specifically mention U.S. backing for Article 5, but aides said later that USA support was assumed and did not have to be mentioned.

In a pointed apparent reference to Mr Trump's meeting with Mr Putin, Mr Tusk noted that European military spending "is an investment in our security, which can not be said with confidence about Russian and Chinese spending".

Trump has ramped up his rhetoric ahead of the talks - including in three separate tirades on Twitter on Monday and Tuesday - making the summit one of the most hard in years for the military alliance that has underpinned European security since World War II. Tusk recalled that the Europeans are spending more than Russian Federation and as much as China on defence. "You're not dealing with Russian Federation, you're making Russian Federation richer", Trump said.

Getting ready to leave for Europe.

The EU president then directly addressed Trump, "who for a long time now has been criticizing Europe nearly daily for, in his view, insufficient contributions to the common defense capabilities, and for living off the United States". Trump's first words signalled this one is not going to be like this.

European officials have expressed hopes that member states can paper over their differences, but European Union President Donald Tusk delivered a blunt message to the USA leader on Tuesday.

The alliance says that 15 members, or just over half, will meet the benchmark by that year, based on current trends.

Ms Hutchison expects Mr Trump to ask Mr Putin to stop sanctioning Russian acts of "hybrid warfare".

Last month, the U.S. raised fears of a trade war by slapping tariffs on steel and aluminium from the EU, Canada, Mexico and other USA allies.

Trump also heaped praise on former British foreign secretary Boris Johnson, who led Britain's "leave" campaign during its 2016 Brexit referendum, and whose resignation this week has triggered a political crisis for Britain's Conservative government. "But above all, when you meet President Putin in Helsinki".

European Council President Mr Tusk said pointedly that when Mr Trump did meet Mr Putin on 16 July, "it is always worth knowing who is your strategic friend and who is your strategic problem".

Mr Trump has threatened that he would only protect countries who met the two per cent defence spending obligation the alliance states agreed to meet by 2024.

'The alliance can rely on the United Kingdom to lead by example, not just in meeting the 2 per cent pledge but by contributing our cutting-edge capabilities to operations around the world, ' she said.

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