At NATO, Trump Slams Germany as Being ‘Captive’ to Russia

A meeting of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization began on a confrontational note on Wednesday with U.S. President Trump singling out Germany for criticism, accusing the largest and wealthiest Europeanmember of the defense alliance of being a “captive” of Russia.

During a breakfast meeting with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, Trump pointedly criticized Germany for allowing Russian energy company Gazprom to construct the Nord Stream 2 pipeline through its waters.

Trump on Wednesday also kept up his demands for NATO members to contribute more money to the defense alliance that has been the linchpin of the West’s post-World War Two military cooperation.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg finds himself in the uncomfortable position of trying to bridge differences between the United States and the other 28 members of the alliance.  “My main task is to try to keep us together and I do that by trying to find common ground,” explained Stoltenberg.

Source: voanews

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European stocks end lower as Merkel comes under pressure in Germany

European stock markets finished in the red Monday, as Angela Merkel’s tenure as Germany’s chancellor came under threat and the trade conflict between the U.S. and China remained in focus.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index dropped 0.8% to close at 385.91, building on a 1% loss from Friday.

Germany’s DAX 30 index fell 1.4% to end at 12,834.11, while France’s CAC 40 gave up 0.9% to finish at 5,450.48.

The U.K.’s FTSE 100 slipped less than 0.1% to end at 7,631.33.

The euro dipped to $ 1.1606 from $ 1.1609 late Friday in New York.

Source: Marketwatch

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Merkel’s CDU agrees coalition with SPD in Germany: reports

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU party has reached an agreement with Martin Schulz’s center-left SPD to form a governing coalition, a report showed.

The Germans voted in a general election on Sept. 24, where Merkel’s party came out with the most votes, but fell short of an outright majority.

Merkel first tried to form a coalition with the Greens and the FDP, but turned to the social democrats after those talks collapsed.

The SPD was also in a coalition with the CDU in the previous government, but had vowed not to take on the role as junior partner again.

Source: Marketwatch

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