Trump commits to NATO's Article 5
Posted June 9, 2017 4:37 p.m. EDT
President Donald Trump said on Friday what he would not at NATO headquarters last month: He is committed to NATO's principle of common defense.
"I am committing the United States to Article 5," Trump said at Friday's press conference, referring to the alliance's principle that an attack on one NATO nation is an attack on them all.
"And certainly we are there to protect," Trump added, saying this is why the US is "paying the kind of money necessary to have that force."
"Yes, absolutely I would be committed to Article 5," he concluded.
But Trump declined to make the same statement during his speech at NATO headquarters in Brussels last month, when he scolded NATO leaders for failing to meet the alliance's defense spending guideline of 2% of GDP.
Appearing with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis on Friday, Trump also reiterated his call for NATO members to meet the guideline - along with his claim that NATO members should repay what he regards as underpayments from previous years.
That didn't seem to bother Iohannis, who noted that Romania was the first country under Trump's administration to "step up to 2 percent of GDP for defense spending."
"I'm very glad that due to your strong leadership NATO decided to go against terrorism," the Romanian president said. "Your involvement made so many nations conscious of the fact that we have to share the burden inside NATO."