President Trump cancels a news conference previously scheduled at the close of the two-day NATO summit in London.
The president officially canceled the press conference via twitter on Wednesday saying, “When today’s meetings are over, I will be heading back to Washington. We won’t be doing a press conference at the close of NATO because we did so many over the past two days.”
President Trump also touted the progress made in enticing the pact to increase defense spending in recent years- one of the president’s key objectives during his tenure in office.
The president weighed in on the success saying, “Countries other than the U.S. have agreed to pay 130 Billion Dollars more per year, and by 2024, that number will be 400 Billion Dollars.”
His decision to cancel the press conference comes shortly after a clip surfaced of other world leaders, including Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, mocking him.
The president slammed Trudeau after the video surfaced, calling Trudeau “two-faced” although suggesting he is still a “nice guy.”
President Trump said, “The truth is I called him [Trudeau] out on the fact that he’s not paying 2% and I guess he’s not very happy about it,” referring to the 2% defense spending goal set in place by NATO standards.
President Trump met with his NATO counterparts during the two-day meeting in London, where he discussed trade, terrorism, and the need for the 2% defense spending.
Although only six countries, not including the United States, met the 2% funding threshold required by the treaty in 2018, nearly all of the nations have heightened defense spending since President Trump took office.
Some reports suggest President Trump has made it clear he would consider leaving the bloc if the other members do not step up to the plate, but has also praised the pact’s progress.
Nearly all nations within the alliance have increased how much funding they allocate to the alliance since the president rewrote the precedent abroad.
Greece, the United Kingdom, Estonia, Poland, Latvia, and Lithuania all reached the 2% threshold in 2018, and at least 16 of the member nations are projected to reach the 2% goal by 2024.