Donald Trump stands by remarks about not defending Nato members after backlash

15 February 2024, 03:44

Election 2024 Trump
Election 2024 Trump. Picture: PA

‘Look, if they’re not going to pay, we’re not going to protect. OK?’ Mr Trump said.

Former President Donald Trump has again said that if he returns to the White House, he would not defend Nato members that do not meet defence spending targets.

It comes days after he set off alarms in Europe by suggesting he would tell Russia to attack Nato allies he considered delinquent.

Speaking at a campaign rally in South Carolina on Wednesday, he retold the story of his alleged conversation with the head of a Nato member country that had not met its obligations.

This time, though, he left out the line that drew the most outrage — encouraging Russia “to do whatever the hell they want”.

“Look, if they’re not going to pay, we’re not going to protect. OK?” he said.

A spokesperson for President Joe Biden’s re-election campaign said on Wednesday: “Donald Trump just gave Vladimir Putin the best possible Valentine’s Day present: his pinky-promise to give Putin the green light to mow down our allies in Europe if he’s elected president.”

Mr Biden previously excoriated Mr Trump for his remarks about Nato, calling them “dangerous”, “un-American”, and “shocking”.

Mr Biden has also pushed for a foreign aid package to assist Ukraine as it fights Russia’s invasion.

Mr Trump has opposed the aid and said that the US should instead provide a loan to Ukraine.

“Why should you just hand it over to them?” he said.

By Press Association

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