Donald Trump wiretapping joke overshadows meet with Merkel

  • Donald Trump wiretapping joke overshadows meet with Merkel

Donald Trump wiretapping joke overshadows meet with Merkel

Donald Trump's and Angela Merkel's rhetoric on global trade showed no sign that the two leaders are anywhere close to finding common ground. "So I don't know what newspaper you're reading, but I guess that would be another example of, as you say, fake news". She further added that both the USA and Germany were expecting "that something good comes out of it for their own people". "I believe that globalization - to be shaped in an open-minded way but also in a fair way - freedom of movement, is a very important element of our economic progress of peace and has been for many, many decades".

The gap in perception between a president in office for eight weeks and a German chancellor who has governed for nearly 12 years may foreshadow the widening chasm across the Atlantic. "We just concluded a productive meeting with the German and American companies to discuss workforce development and vocational training".

The statement may have dismayed Merkel who said that the "success of Germans has always been one where the German success is one side of the coin and the other side of the coin has been European unity and European integration".

Merkel then appeared to ask the President if he wanted to shake hands, which is customary in photo ops, but Trump simply did not respond. Even as Merkel kept leaning toward him in a friendly gesture, Trump looked straight ahead, sitting with his legs apart and hands together.

Trump refused to take responsibility for the fallout resulting from his controversial accusation that President Obama had his wires tapped in Trump Tower.

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"It's much much better to talk to one another than about one another", Merkel said, perhaps referencing a number of comments Trump made about her during the campaign trail.

"People are different", Merkel mused. "At least from my side".

Trump has called North Atlantic Treaty Organisation "obsolete" and has complained about member states not contributing enough to the alliance. He was among those in the audience for the news conference. Merkel, for her part, emphasized that when it comes to Ukraine, "the relationship with Russian Federation has to be improved".

The U.S. president was mum, meanwhile, on one of the biggest challenges now facing North Atlantic Treaty Organisation: the threat from Russian Federation. Trump, known for his enthusiastic greetings, did extend his hand to Merkel when she arrived at the White House.