Trump's strained visit with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, meeting with Putin

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A senior European Union official lashed out Tuesday at President Donald Trump, lambasting the US leader for his constant criticism of European allies and urging him to remember who is friends are when he meets Russian President Vladimir Putin next week.

The US president bit back on Twitter, writing: "NATO countries must pay MORE, the United States must pay LESS". And it could help promote acceptance of Trump's accurate assertion that the United States and the West must deal with reemergent Russia-despite the prevailing narrative that Trump is Putin's lapdog, which the mainstream media use to try driving Trump from office.

Some diplomats fear that Trump will threaten to pull troops out of Europe without more spending on defense, despite USA denials.

President Trump is leaving for his North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels on Tuesday morning in an apparent good mood-and happy to take some preemptive shots at the world bloc.

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Diplomats fear a rancorous meeting in Brussels could undermine efforts to show unity in the face of the growing threat on the alliance's eastern flank, particularly with Trump set to meet Putin in Helsinki a few days later.

He will then head to Helsinki for talks with Russian leader Vladimir Putin and some experts have expressed fears the pair will agree the United States should station fewer troops in Europe.

Trump is pushing for other countries to spend more on their own defense, while taking credit for some increases that have already occurred. "Charge us big Tariffs (& Barriers)!" "Frankly, Putin may be the easiest of them all", Trump said Tuesday. On the European migrant problem, the United States has been of zero help under both the Obama and Trump administrations.

"America, appreciate your allies - after all, you don't have that many".

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Meanwhile, Mr Trump will be largely kept away from central London.

"We protect Europe (which is good) at great financial loss, and then get unfairly clobbered on Trade. As far as I'm concerned, he's a competitor", Trump said of Putin. Saying that he wants to improve relations with Moscow, Trump has repeatedly cast doubt on conclusions by the nation's intelligence agencies that Russian Federation tried to help him win the 2016 election, noting that Putin has "strongly" denied being behind the interference.

President Donald Trump reportedly sought to ease Russian President Vladimir Putin's concerns that White House officials were trying to block a phone call between the two. "I hope you have no doubt this is an investment in our security, which can not be said with confidence about Russian & Chinese spending", Tusk pressed, punctuated with a smiley-face emoticon.

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