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Angela Merkel, Donald Trump Meet at NATO Summit after Trump Says Russia Controls Germany
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Summary: President Trump and Chancellor Merkel met one-on-one at the NATO summit on Wednesday. 

President Donald Trump recently insulted Germany and claimed that the country was controlled by Russia. The scathing remark happened before a one-on-one meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Trump at the NATO summit on Wednesday, according to ABC News. 

  
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During a breakfast with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Trump said, “Germany is totally controlled by Russia, because they will be getting from 60-70% of their energy from Russia and a new pipeline.”

Trump said that this was inappropriate and “a very bad thing for NATO” and he added that he would talk to Merkel about it.

Reuters fact-checked Trump’s claim and found that 35.3% of German oil and gas imports do come from Russia and that number may increase after the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project is completed.

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Just hours after Trump’s comments, Merkel said that Germany is free of Soviet control, citing that as someone who once lived in eastern Germany, she knew what it actually was like under Russian rule.

“I am very happy that today we are united in freedom, the Federal Republic of Germany,” Merkel said. “Because of that, we can say that we can make our independent policies and make independent decisions. That is very good, especially for people in eastern Germany.”



Trump also criticized Merkel’s handling of the German military, which is something that her citizens and defense minister have criticized her for as well. At the NATO summit, Merkel defended Germany’s defenses and said that German troops are still fighting in Afghanistan in support of the US.

“Germany is the second-largest provider of troops — the largest part of our military capacity is offered to NATO and until today we have a strong engagement toward Afghanistan,” Merkel said. “In that we also defend the interests of the United States.”

Mark D. Simakovsky, an Atlantic Council expert who previously served as the Europe/NATO chief of staff in the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Policy, told Business Insider that Merkel will not likely be able to gain support to increase her military spending because Trump is unpopular in Europe.

ABC News said that when Merkel and Trump met on Wednesday the two were businesslike in front of reporters.

Merkel said that the US was a partner to Germany and that she and Trump discussed trade and migration. Trump said that the meeting went well.

“We’re having a great meeting. We’re discussing military expenditure, talking about trade,” Trump said. “We have a very, very good relationship with the Chancellor. We have a tremendous relationship with Germany.”

What do you think of Angela Merkel? Let us know in the comments below.



 

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