The White House says a report that President Donald Trump gave German Chancellor Angela Merkel a bill for about $374billion earlier this month is ‘false’.

The invoice was for money Germany ‘owed’ NATO for defending it, a report published by The Times said, which cited ‘German government sources’.

A German minister told the paper that the bill was ‘outrageous’.

The minister was quoted as saying: ‘The concept behind putting out such demands is to intimidate the other side, but the chancellor took it calmly and will not respond to such provocations.’ 

The White House says a report that President Donald Trump gave German Chancellor Angela Merkel a bill for about $374billion earlier this month is 'false'. Trump and Merkel are pictured together in Washington on March 17 

The White House says a report that President Donald Trump gave German Chancellor Angela Merkel a bill for about $374billion earlier this month is ‘false’. Trump and Merkel are pictured together in Washington on March 17 

Merkel allegedly received the bill for the United States’s services to NATO while she was in Washington, DC, according to CNBC.  

NATO member countries are supposed to spend two per cent of their gross domestic product (GDP) in defense each year.

Just five members – Britain, Estonia, Greece, Poland, and the United States – do so.

The Times said that Trump officials, beginning with 2002, calculated how much Germany fell short on the two per cent NATO goal for each year and added it together, before they proceeded to include interest.

Merkel allegedly received the bill for the United States's services to NATO while she was in Washington, DC. She is pictured with Trump in a March 17 photo

Merkel allegedly received the bill for the United States’s services to NATO while she was in Washington, DC. She is pictured with Trump in a March 17 photo

A source described as being close to the German chancellor told the paper: ‘The president has a very unorthodox view on NATO defense spending.

‘The alliance is not a club with a membership fee. The commitments relate to countries’ investment in their defense budgets.’

The report is ‘false,’ White House spokesman Michael Short told CNBC.  

Trump met with Merkel on Friday, March 17, in Washington, DC. 

He said in two March 18 tweets: ‘Despite what you have heard from the FAKE NEWS, I had a GREAT meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Nevertheless, Germany owes…

‘…vast sums of money to NATO & the United States must be paid more for the powerful, and very expensive, defense it provides to Germany!’

Trump said on March 18 that German owes 'vast sums of money to NATO & the United States must be paid more for the powerful, and very expensive, defense it provides to Germany!'

Trump said on March 18 that German owes ‘vast sums of money to NATO & the United States must be paid more for the powerful, and very expensive, defense it provides to Germany!’

Source


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