After NATO chaos, Trump met by protest, pomp in Britain

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"I think he has done a bad job on crime, if you look, all of the frightful things going on there, with all of the crime that is being brought in".

Reversing the harsh criticisms he has leveled at NATO, President Trump says the alliance is very strong - in part because of promises from America's allies to boost their military budgets to 2 percent of their gross domestic product.

This alliance of 28 countries from around the world is a pillar of American interests since its inception many decades ago.

He claimed in a press conference that "Yesterday I let allies know I was extremely unhappy with what was happening".

"Everybody in the room thanked me", he said, "There's a great collegial spirit in that room that I don't think they've had in many years". But I would also encourage the president to exercise caution with Russian Federation - which has proven to be a hostile nation to the United States and our Western allies.

On spending, he said "we are stepping up as never before, allowing USA spending to go down", and there was a "new sense of urgency due to president Trump's strong leadership on defence spending".

President Trump on Thursday pointed the finger at Prime Minister Theresa May for the UK's Brexit debacle, saying she ignored his advice on negotiating her nation's departure from the European Union and made things worse.

As for Trump's call for a 4 percent defense effort by all, it was ignored.

He also said he thought spending of 4 percent on defence - similar to the USA level - would be the right level.

Former NATO Deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow said on paper the summit was a success because of binding commitments to present a plan for increased defense spending and the development of the long-awaited Southern Strategy.

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Why - almost three decades after the end of the Cold War, the collapse of the Warsaw Pact, the crackup of the Soviet Union and the overthrow of the Communist dictatorship in Moscow - are we still defending European nations that collectively have 10 times the GDP of Vladimir Putin's Russian Federation?

"And the good thing is that, very much because of that very clear message from President Trump on this meeting, I think that allies understand this need to do that", Stoltenberg said after being repeatedly asked about Trump's assertion that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members had agreed to a four-percent goal.

As Europe's biggest natural gas consumer, Germany relies on Russian Federation for roughly half of its gas imports, which account for 20 percent of its current energy mix, according to London-based Marex Spectron group.

"It reaffirms a commitment to 2 percent in 2024".

Merkel's predecessor, Gerhard Schroeder, a longtime friend of Putin, has championed the Nord Stream enterprise since just before being voted out of office in 2005.

However Washington opposes the project, and a spokesman for the U.S. State Department told Reuters on Wednesday that Western firms invested in the pipeline were at risk of sanctions.

"Allies would be increasing spending by $33 billion or more", he added.

One idea Trump floated last week was the threat of a drawdown of the 35,000 US troops in Germany.

The outdoor arrival ceremony at Blenheim - Trump wore a tuxedo and first lady Melania Trump a butter-yellow, chiffon off-the-shoulder gown - was a grand affair marked by a military band in bearskin hats, hundreds of business leaders in black tie and gorgeous setting sunlight.

Asked if Trump in any way implied the US could pull back from its commitment to - or participation in - NATO, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the president did not.

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