Merkel responds to Trump: 'I have witnessed' Germany under Soviet control

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Trump wrote in a second tweet, continuing a line of attack he opened Wednesday against Germany over its reliance on a gas pipeline from Russia: "On top of it all, Germany just started paying Russia, the country they want protection from, Billions of Dollars for their Energy needs coming out of a new pipeline from Russia".

Trump said he had been "extremely unhappy" with allies' low levels of defense spending before the summit, but was pleased "they have substantially upped their commitment" during a "fantastic" unscheduled crisis meeting on Thursday morning.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel also responded Wednesday to Trump's remarks, offering Trump something of a history lesson.

Merkel, who grew up in communist East Germany, shot back that she had "experienced myself a part of Germany controlled by the Soviet Union, and I'm very happy today that we are united in freedom as the Federal Republic of Germany and can thus say that we can determine our own policies and make our own decisions and that's very good".

"We had a fantastic meeting at the end".

"Germany, as far as I'm concerned, is captive of Russian Federation because it is getting so much of its energy from Russian Federation", he said.

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

Stoltenberg estimated European allies and Canada will add $266 billion to their military spending by 2024 and said, "this is really adding some extra momentum", apparently meaning Trump's pressure.

Mr Trump earlier claimed that Germany was "captive to Russia".

Not only did Trump demand on Twitter on Thursday that countries meet the 2% level by this year, not 2024, but he also said all countries should eventually hit 4%, which is more than even the United States now spends.

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The alliance lists the U.S.as spending an estimated 3.5 percent of its GDP on its military budget this year.

Merkel said it was very important to have such exchanges like the meeting she and Trump were having because "after all, we are partners".

The organization also extended a formal invitation to Macedonia to become the 30th member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, following the recent thaw in relations between the country and its neighbor Greece.

"Not acceptable!" he railed before a day of events that will include meetings with the leaders of Azerbaijan, Romania, Ukraine and Georgia before he heads to his next stop: the United Kingdom.

'Their tariffs on our autos are four times higher in their defense spending is one fourth of what ours is and Germany is the wealthiest country in Europe, spending on defense is much less than most of other countries, ' he said.

TRUMP: "You know, we're protecting Germany, we're protecting France".

British Prime Minister Theresa May tried to set the tone on Wednesday by announcing more troops for NATO's Afghan training mission.

EU President Donald Tusk stepped up to the fight with his own salvo against Trump on Tuesday, telling him to "appreciate your allies" and reminding him Washington that Europe had come to its aid following the 9/11 attacks.

Diplomats were already anxious about the summit ahead of time, not least because of an abrasive G7 meeting last month, when Mr Trump renounced a summit communique that had previously been jointly agreed.

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