NATO marks 70th birthday
December 4, 2019 - Op een top in Londen ter gelegenheid van het 70-jarig bestaan van de Noord-Atlantische Verdrags Organisatie, zullen de leiders van de 29 leden tellende alliantie waarschijnlijk een Frans-Duits voorstel tot hervorming aannemen, nadat de Amerikaanse president Donald Trump de relevantie van de NAVO in twijfel trok.
At the December 4 summit, allies are expected to agree to share more of running costs and reduce U.S. share of funding for the NATO headquarters in Brussels, and its staff. Europe is also likely to agree to boost NATO battalions, ships and planes as a deterrence against any potential Russian attack.
Before taking office, Trump called NATO “obsolete” and has repeatedly stated his desire to withdraw from NATO. He continues to criticize the alliance, demanding that NATO members pay more in defence spending.
NATO had planned to hold a meeting of leaders in Washington to mark its 70th anniversary in April. That meeting was downgraded to a foreign ministers gathering, as some diplomats feared that Trump would use a Washington summit to renew his attacks on the alliance, as he did in July 2018.
At that annual gathering of NATO leaders in Brussels, Trump upended the proceedings, berating allies for not meeting the NATO spending goal of two per cent of economic output (GDP). At the meeting, he surprised leaders by demanding four per cent and walked out during a speech by Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany.