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Home / World / AP FACT CHECK: Trump's European provocations and the facts

AP FACT CHECK: Trump's European provocations and the facts

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump shook every turn on his European tour, making statements to NATO, Britain, Germany and more that would provoke, and they did. Accuracy was not always a hallmark of these statements.

One week in retrospect:

TRUMP: "I did not criticize the Prime Minister." – Press Conference Friday with British Prime Minister Theresa May.


In an interview with the British Sun newspaper, he sharply complained about her approach to ban Britain from the European Union and hinted that she did not Willingness of voters who called for this step in an EU Referendum 201

6 May proposes to maintain certain trade and economic relations that Trump believes should be separated.

"I would have done it a lot differently," he said in an interview. "I actually told Theresa May how to do it, but she did not agree, she did not listen to me, she wanted to go another way, I'd say she probably went the other way, and that's fine. She should negotiate how she does it best, but it is a pity what is going on … The agreement she makes is quite a different matter from what people have voted for. "

He went so far as to say that if Britain is still partially economically integrated with the EU, "this would probably be an end to important trade relations with the United States" and "killing" of opportunities for a bilateral US-UK trade agreement.

Then he went back to the press conference and told her, "Whatever you do is OK for me." Large bilateral trade agreement with the United Kingdom. This is an incredible opportunity for our two countries, and we will fully embrace it. "


TRUMP, who spoke on Friday after a NATO summit marked by a controversial rhetoric and crowned by a controversial crisis meeting:" There was a lot of love in this room.

THE FACTS: It does not seem Trump's NATO partners felt the love.

Despite attempts to reduce differences, Trump leaves doubts about the depth of his commitment to the Alliance. "I was ready to do things which was a bit tough yesterday, "said Trump on Friday, raising concerns among NATO partners that US involvement may be shaky, and he said that NATO" helps Europe more than it helps us, "he said at the conclusion of the summit, "I believe in NATO."

In Trump's message, unity was finally restored by a new commitment from NATO partners to increase their military expenditures to relieve the US budget. "Many People were surprised that NATO came together in the end, "he said, but the European leaders said they only agreed to carry on what they did – put military spending under the target, b By 2024, 2 percent of its gross national product is to be used for defense purposes.


TRUMP, Sun interview: "I cut a band for Turnberry's opening – you know they did a complete makeover, it's beautiful – the day before the Brexit vote, I said "Brexit will happen, the vote will be positive because people do not want to be confronted with the terrible immigration issues they face in other countries."

THE FACTS: He blends his predictions and his days. A month earlier, he had predicted that Britain would vote to leave the European Union. The day after the vote in 2016 – not the day before – he predicted that the EU would collapse because of the British withdrawal. That remains to be seen. He predicted the collapse of the EU while working on a tie for his Scottish golf resort in Turnberry.


TRUMP, claiming progress from its summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un Kim, said: "We'll see where everything ends, but there was no missile testing, there was no investigation into where it was blew up a website, I hear they're blowing up another rocket website. "- Press conference Thursday in Brussels.

THE FACTS: North Korea did not say it blew up starting places. Before the summit, it destroyed something else – its testbed for subterranean nuclear blasting. Journalists saw the demolition of three tunnels and nearby buildings. The site could already have been compromised by the previous nuclear explosions, and its destruction was one step below many needed for denuclearization.

If anything has been done to withdraw rocket launches, it is marginal at best. Officials have not reviewed any reports that North Korea may have demolished a rocket ejection stand in May. Ejection attempts are only a small step away from a full blown start.


TRUMP on NATO: "Everyone has agreed to step up their engagement significantly, they will top it up on a level they never thought of before." And, "I can tell you now that NATO is now really a finely tuned machine, people are paying money they have never paid, they are happy to do it, and the United States are being treated much fairer. "- Press conference Thursday in Brussels.

THE FACTS: There is no outward sign that Trump's aggressive stance has changed anything for the Alliance other than violating its facade of unity.

NATO Members had already agreed in 2014 not to cut their military budgets and set themselves the goal of "spending 2 percent of their gross domestic product on their own defense by 2024".

On Wednesday, Trump shook the summit with a call to NATO Members should more than double their military budgets and propose a new benchmark, devoting 4 percent of their economy to defense. (NATO estimates the US an estimated 3.5 percent of its GDP for its military budget this year.)

But until Thursday, leaders from France, Germany, and Italy offered no support for Trump's claim that he would squeeze new concessions Alliance for their military spending. "I made it clear that we know that we have to do more and that we have been doing this for a while," said Chancellor Angela Merkel. "This turning point has long been initiated."

French President Emmanuel Macron said the allies had confirmed in their communique their intention to reach the target of 2 percent by 2024 and not more.


TRUMP: "I told people I would be very unhappy if they did not materially fulfill their obligations because the United States has paid a huge sum, probably 90 percent of the cost of NATO. "- Press conference in Brussels.

THE FACTS: Not true. The US military budget compromises about 70 percent of the military spending of all NATO countries, not 90 percent – and that applies to global military obligations, not just Europe.

NATO has an administrative budget of approximately $ 3 billion in certain civilian and military costs. The US share is limited to 22 percent. The United States may bear higher costs for certain military missions under the NATO banner.


TRUMP: "Honestly, many countries owe us a tremendous amount of money for many years back where they are delinquent, as far as I'm concerned, because the United States had to pay for them or go back 20 years, just add everything in. It's massive sums of money, "said Wednesday at a meeting with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

TRUMP: "Many countries in NATO that we need to defend not only have their current 2% commitment (which is low), but are also liable for many years to unsettled payments." Will they reimburse the US? "- Tweet Tuesday.

THE FACTS: There is no such debt to the US or NATO. Therefore no payment difficulty or payment question.

It refers to how much each NATO country spends on its own defense and forces them to spend more. This would put some pressure on US military spending. But there are no promissory notes that have been collected in recent years.

In 2014, before Trump became president, NATO members agreed to cut their military budgets and set a target to spend 2 percent of their gross domestic product on their own defense – by 2024. It was not a "commitment," not a direct Contribution to NATO, no payment owed to the US, and nothing the Alliance members wanted to do immediately.

Trump is right that most NATO members spend less than 2 percent of their GDP on their defense budget, although more is moving in that direction.

Trump has attacked NATO members such as Germany for being behind their military budgets, while recognizing progress on this front. He has repeatedly claimed that because of his pressure "billions and billions of dollars pour in," which is not true, because there is no such fund to pour money into.


TRUMP: "Germany is a prisoner of Russia because they are supplying (energy), they got rid of their coal plants, they got rid of their nuclear power, they get so much oil and gas from Russia, I think that is something that NATO has to keep in mind. "- notes Wednesday.

FACTS: He was wrong in relation to coal and nuclear power and overstated Germany's dependence on Russian natural gas. In 2017, Germany received more than a third of its energy for electricity from coal and almost 12 percent from nuclear power plants. One third comes from renewable energies. Only 13 percent came from natural gas, with Russia being the main supplier.

Trump opposed the adoption of a new pipeline project by the Federal Republic, which will bring more natural gas from Russia.

Germany plans to mine 2022 and 209 nuclear power plants, intending to reduce its dependence on coal. But Germany has not "disconnected" from both.


TRUMP: "One of the states we've won, Wisconsin – I did not even notice that until recently – was the one state that Ronald Reagan did not gain when he joined the board he did not win Wisconsin and we won Wisconsin. "- Press conference Thursday in Brussels.

THE FACTS: Trump said that before; it is not true. Reagan won Wisconsin in the 1980 and 1984 presidential elections.


Associated Press authors Lorne Cook in Brussels and David Rising in Berlin contributed to this report.


AP fact checks can be found at http://apne.ws/2kbx8bd

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