The eye-popping claims, from sources in the German government, broke on the day President Donald Trump was at his golf course
White House officials have denied shock claims Donald Trump handed Angela Merkel a £300billion ‘bill’ for Nato on her trip to Washington.
The eye-popping claims emerged in the respected Sunday Times newspaper, which quoted sources in the German government.
It was claimed the bill, for money Germany ‘owed’ to the alliance, was handed over during the Chancellor’s visit 10 days ago.
One minister told the newspaper it was “outrageous”, adding: “The concept behind putting out such demands is to intimidate the other side.
“The chancellor took it calmly and will not respond to such provocations.”
A source close to Mrs Merkel added: “The alliance is not a club with a membership fee.”
But questioned by US media, both White House press secretary Sean Spicer and spokesman Michael Short denied the report about a so-called bill.
Nato expects its 28 members to spend 2% of their GDP on defence, but nations are often accused of falling short.
President Donald Trump has complained Nato is “obsolete and disproportionately too expensive (and unfair) for the US”, adding: “Alliance members must PAY THEIR BILLS”.
The row came as the White House was accused of hiding President Trump’s apparent decision to play golf yesterday.
Pool reporters said they were told the Republican billionaire would be “in meetings”.
But an Instagram photo showed him wearing golfing shoes at the Trump National Golf Club in Virginia.
Pool was told Trump was in meetings at Trump National this afternoon. This Instagram photo posted from the course says otherwise pic.twitter.com/WMudqofGmO
— Josh Billinson (@jbillinson) 25 марта 2017 г.
It has been estimated as Trump’s 12th or 13th visit to a golf course in the two months since becoming President.
His devotion to the game comes despite Trump repeatedly berating Barack Obama for playing golf when he was in office.
Last year he tweeted: “While our wonderful president was out playing golf all day, the TSA is falling apart, just like our government! Airports a total disaster!”
In 2014 he wrote: “Can you believe that,with all of the problems and difficulties facing the US, President Obama spent the day playing golf. Worse than Carter.”
While our wonderful president was out playing golf all day, the TSA is falling apart, just like our government! Airports a total disaster!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 21 мая 2016 г.
Can you believe that,with all of the problems and difficulties facing the U.S., President Obama spent the day playing golf.Worse than Carter
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 14 октября 2014 г.
President Obama played golf yesterday???
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 18 ноября 2013 г.
Wish I could be on the golf course but have to work – must be nice to be President
— Sean Spicer (@seanspicer) 29 июля 2012 г.
In 2013 he wrote: “President Obama played golf yesterday???”
And his now-press secretary Sean Spicer said in 2012: “Wish I could be on the golf course but have to work – must be nice to be President.”