Trump jabs Macron as he arrives in France for Armistice visit

French President Emmanuel Macron chairs a cabinet meeting in Charleville-Mezieres northeastern France Wednesday Nov.7 2018

French President Emmanuel Macron chairs a cabinet meeting in Charleville-Mezieres northeastern France Wednesday Nov.7 2018

US President Donald Trump Saturday said the suggestion of his French counterpart Emanuel Macron that Europe should build its own army was "very insulting", asserting that Europe should first pay its "fair share" to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

Trump's comments were in response to Mr Macron's idea for the European Union to have its own dedicated military, created to defend Europe from China, Russia and the US.

Trump sent a tweet calling Macron's proposal "very insulting" as the US president's plane landed Friday evening for celebrations with world leaders commemorating the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

He will also join other world leaders to commemorate the centenary anniversary of the Armistice signed on November 11, 1918, between the Allied Forces and Germany in the forest of Compiegne in France to end the First World War.

Macron told Europe 1 radio that the "main victim" of the United States withdrawal from the INF accord was Europe and its security.

"We have to protect ourselves with respect to China, Russia and even the United States", he told Europe 1 broadcaster, suggesting for the first time that Europe might need to defend itself from America.

European countries should contribute more money towards North Atlantic Treaty Organisation rather than ponder the "very insulting" prospect of a pan-European armed force, U.S. President Donald Trump said on Twitter on Friday. Mr. Trump's visit comes on the heels of midterm elections in which Americans delivered a split referendum on his presidency, keeping the Senate in his party's control but ceding the House to opposition Democrats.

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Both Mr Trump and Mr Putin will be among the leaders attending that ceremony.

Macron's push to bring together a core 10-nation coalition of the willing "was born out of French impatience with the EU's efforts at defence co-operation", known as Permanent Structured Co-operation (Pesco) says The Economist.

On Saturday morning, Macron and Trump will hold bilateral talks on issues expected to include Syria and Iran before lunching with Melania and Macron's wife Brigitte.

Early this week, Macron had pushed for a "true European Army" that would address the threat posed by countries like Russian Federation and China.

Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, said on Friday in Paris that the USA was concerned about stability in Europe and that Trump was not shirking from global engagement.

"I think it will be something very, very special", he said. Although leaders like Mr Macron will not likely take kindly to the tone in the United States president's tweet. "And we look forward to that", Trump told reporters on Friday before leaving the White House.

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