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German defence minister visits US, calls NATO demands ‘fair’

German Defence Minister Von der Leyen met with US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis in Washington to discuss military cooperation between the two countries.

By: AP | Berlin | Published: February 11, 2017 2:26:52 am
Germany and Nato, German defence minister in US, US on Nato, US and Germany relations, US and other Nato members, US and Germany relations news, Latest news, World news, International news German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen talks to the media following a meeting with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis at the Pentagon. (Source: AP)

Germany’s defense minister agrees with America’s call for European NATO members to shoulder more of the burden in the alliance. Minister Ursula von der Leyen said on Friday that the Trump administration’s call which echoes long-standing US policy is “a fair demand.”

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Von der Leyen met with US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis in Washington to discuss military cooperation between the two countries.

Berlin is keen to strengthen ties with its trans-Atlantic ally after US President Donald Trump set alarm bells ringing by calling NATO “obsolete” last month. Germany relied on US military protection during the Cold War and has remained far below the defense expenditure threshold of 2 percent expected of NATO members.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that Germany will increase its military spending going forward.

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