Trump lashes out at Germany over trade and NATO, promises 'change'

Cheryl Sanders
May 31, 2017

Merkel said Tuesday Germany's relations with the United States are of "outstanding importance" but it must engage with other key nations going forward. Highlighting that this is Modi's second bilateral visit to Germany since 2015, she said that the ease of doing business in India and the fast track mechanism set up in 2015 to assist German businesses work in India received appreciation from the German side. "But the United States are older and bigger than the current conflict and so I think we will return to good relations in the future".

The German foreign minister said it's not appropriate to communicate with U.S. from a beer tent and over Twitter.

U.S. President Donald Trump views Germany as an important U.S. ally and gets along very well with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the White House said on Tuesday.

Germany is the only country with which India has such an institutionalized dialogue mechanism.

In his tweet, Trump said: "We have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on North Atlantic Treaty Organisation & military".

She also finessed her message slightly on Monday, stressing that she was a "convinced trans-Atlanticist". "This is a new situation - we lived for decades in the certainty that we could rely on each other as partners in an alliance, and this certainty no longer exists today".

She warned German voters that her experience in dealing with Trump at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the G7 had convinced her that the times when Europe could rely on Washington and London "are coming to an end". Germany's Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel also blasted the USA, saying the Trump administration's "short-sighted policies... stand against the interest of the European Union".

Martin Schulz, leader of the center-left Social Democrats, told reporters Trump was "the destroyer of all Western values", adding that the USA president was undermining the peaceful cooperation of nations based on mutual respect and tolerance.

Modi's remarks came during a joint press interaction with German Chancellor Angela Merkel after the two leaders agreed to continue cooperation towards the common aim of developing climate-friendly, efficient and sustainable solutions for India's expanding energy needs and other areas of sustainable development.

Modi was holding formal talks with Merkel as part of the IGC - held every two years - where he was joined by his delegation.

Despite the Trump administration's talk of an "America first" policy and ongoing criticism of Germany for its massive trade surplus, the G7 leaders in Sicily did vow to fight protectionism, reiterating "a commitment to keep our markets open".

Still, it would be unlike Merkel just to give up on dealing with Trump, Tempel said.

Other reports by iNewsToday