Eyes focused on Trump during NATO summit
brussels - The eyes will be focused on Donald Trump this week at the NATO summit. It is expected that the US president will again read the heads of government of the member states, which in his view are still insufficient in defense, to read the lesson in the new headquarters in Brussels.
On Twitter he gave a shot ahead on Monday: 'It is unfair and unacceptable that the US spends much more on NATO than other countries. Although they have increased their contributions, they have to do a lot more. '
In letters to, among others, Prime Minister Rutte and Chancellor Merkel, Trump showed his impatience and frustration last month. He implicitly threatened with the American military presence in Europe.
We are anxiously awaiting whether the erratic Trump this time calls Article 5 of the NATO Convention. This dictates that an attack on one ally is seen as an attack on all. Last year he omitted an attached summit to confirm the safety umbrella. Whether he will support the final statement is still awaiting.
Trump's meeting with Russian President Putin on July 16 feeds the fear that he wants to tighten relations with Moscow. According to US NATO ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchison, Russia's 'malicious' attempts to divide the alliance will fail. 'NATO is strong and united. 'The Dutch government sees the summit as a good opportunity to' deliver a powerful message of unity '.
The 29 leaders will confirm some of the decisions that should speed up the military response capacity of the alliance. For example, the preparedness of the armed forces must be substantially increased in two years. The member states will make commitments to allow troops to move faster through Europe, a project in which the Netherlands plays a pioneering role.
Green light also gets the modernization of the command structure, which creates two new (logistic) headquarters in the US and Germany.
Other topics on the agenda are the expansion of NATO training missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Netherlands will formally announce that it will provide marines and commandos in the coming years on top of the current one hundred troops in Afghanistan. The financial contribution will be extended to 2024.
The meeting is accompanied by large-scale security measures, including in the European district of Brussels where the leaders dine in a museum on Wednesday evening, with Russia as an important topic for discussion.
The Netherlands is represented at the top by Prime Minister Rutte and Ministers Blok (Foreign Affairs) and Bijleveld (Defense).
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