Germany rejects Donald Trump's claims, says it does not owe NATO 'vast sums' of money

Namrata Tripathi
Germany's Merkel issues veiled warning to Donald Trump ahead of G20 Summit

Rejecting the allegations made by the United States President Donald Trump, the German Federal  Ministry of Defence on Sunday said that Germany does not owe North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and the US "vast sums" of money for defence. 

US Vice-President Mike Pence pledges US support for Nato

"There is no debt account at NATO," German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen said in a statement. The minister also elaborated on the distribution of Berlin's military expenditure, which also allocates funds to United Nations peacekeeping, European Union operations and anti-terror efforts in addition to NATO missions, according to Xinhua.

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Trump, on Saturday, had written a tweet saying Germany owes "vast sums" of money to NATO and that the US must be paid for the defence it provides to the European nation.

"Germany owes vast sums of money to NATO and the United States must be paid more for the powerful, and very expensive, defense it provides to Germany!" Trump had tweeted.

Refuting Trump's claim, the minister said that it was unfair to measure Germany's military and security efforts judging solely on its NATO spending.

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Trump wrote the tweet just a day after his meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Washington. The meeting was dubbed as "Not warm, but not distant" by the German media. 

However, a video of clip of their meeting went viral where Trump appears to ignore Merkel's suggestion that they shake hands after photographers requested them to.

Trump had earlier called the NATO "obsolete" and threatened to "moderate" its commitment to the organisation if the member countries did not meet the mandated defence spending target of two percent of their country's gross domestic product (GDP).

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Germany has committed to the target of contributing 2 percent of their GDP by 2024. 

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