Sunday, 18 November 2018 | News today: 7

Trump urges NATO members to double military funding target


US President Donald Trump has urged NATO allies to commit 4% of their annual output (GDP) to military spending – double the current target, the BBC reports.

The White House confirmed he had made the remarks during the Western military alliance’s summit in Brussels.

Earlier, Trump criticised Germany over its defense spending and energy reliance on Russia.

NATO’s secretary-general said the main focus should be on all members reaching the current target of 2% of GDP.

Jens Stoltenberg declined to answer a specific question about Trump’s remarks, but told reporters: “I think we should first get to 2%, focus on that now… the good thing is that we are moving to that.”

For decades after the end of the Cold War, he said, NATO countries had cut defense budgets as tensions fell – and now needed to increase them at a time when tensions were rising.