Trump pleased by NATO allies' defense spending

President Donald Trump meets with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in the Oval Office of the White House, Thursday, May 17, 2018, in Washington.


By KEN THOMAS AND JILL COLVIN | Associated Press | Published: May 17, 2018

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is pointing to his work to push NATO countries to increase their defense spending as he meets at the White House with the NATO leader.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Trump's work is "really having an impact" on defense spending within the alliance.

Trump is asking Stoltenberg whether he'll give him "credit for that." The NATO leader says his leadership has been important.

The discussions are expected to focus on Trump's push to get fellow NATO leaders to increase their military spending along with troop training efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

NATO leaders will meet in Brussels in July.

Trump has pressured NATO members to bolster their military budgets to meet a benchmark of 2 percent of their GDP on defense annually.

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