Trump says North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members have agreed to spending increases

Trump rails against Germany, demands allies double NATO spending

Pentagon leaders ordered a "damage control" operation within hours after President Donald Trump left North Atlantic Treaty Organisation headquarters in Brussels Thursday to reassure European military officials that the United States will stand behind its commitments to defense, according to current and former diplomatic and military officials.

Tensions rose on the final day of the two-day summit, when members met in an emergency session amid demands from Trump to speed up defense spending.

Al Jazeera's diplomatic editor, James Bays, reporting from the Belgian capital, however, said that based on interviews with sources, "nothing it seems, in the closed-door meeting, was resolved".

When pressed to explain Trump's claims he credited the president with a "new sense of urgency" among allies to "redouble our efforts" to increase defence spending, but did not report any new cash or time commitments.

Trump called it "a fantastic meeting", speaking at a news conference on Thursday before flying to Britain.

Since exiting the Iranian nuclear deal, President Trump has demanded that our European allies join the U.S.in reimposing sanctions.

People present said he raged that allies, notably Germany, did not make vast increases in their defence budgets.

In a series of tweets at the time, Trump said that "throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart".

The President singled out Germany for particular criticism over low spending, accusing the nation of being a "captive" of Russian Federation because of a multibillion-dollar pipeline deal.

Macron said he had just agreed a 2019 budget with parliament so changing it was unrealistic - a point Trump later said he had accepted though he still expected all members to hit the 2 percent target in the next years, and then possibly double that. The U.S. share of that is capped at 22 percent.

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The summit's dramatic, chaotic conclusion - complete with the US president suddenly making demands following a formal communique - bore a striking similarity to Trump's departure from last month's G7 meetings in Quebec.

Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite told reporters she's comfortable with the Trump-Putin summit, but it "depends very much on outcomes". However, EU officials claim that "while USA defense spending makes up 70 percent of combined allied governments' military budgets, just 15 percent of US expenditure is spent in Europe on NATO-related defense".

In August of 2016, at the height of the United States presidential election race, 50 Republican national security experts warned then Republican nominee Donald Trump would be "the most reckless president" in American history.

Trump did not directly answer questions about whether he had threatened to take the USA out of the alliance, saying he "told people I'd be very unhappy if they didn't up their commitments very substantially".

Democrats railed against Trump's European tour, and said they were wary of the upcoming, one-on-one meeting with Putin.

"I made clear that we know that we have to do more and that we have been doing so for quite a while", said German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Just a few hours before he was due to leave for Britain, Mr Trump had more to say apparently - and he said it.

The NATO summit follows last month's equally tense Group of Seven meeting in Canada, in which members clashed with Trump over his trade policies and the president received criticism for calling for Russian Federation to be reinstated to the group.

Mr Trump's early-morning tweets from Brussels had been typically critical.

Trump pointed to the texts to label the ongoing investigation a "rigged witch hunt", and said the probe "really hurts our country and it really hurts our relationship with Russian Federation".

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