Trump jokes both he and Angela Merkel were wiretapped by Obama

And, he argued, the U.S. should be paid more “for the powerful, and very expensive, defence it provides”.

His latest tweetstorm comes a day after he met German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Washington, where the two leaders showed little common ground over a host of thorny issues, including North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and defence spending.

“Despite what you have heard from the FAKE NEWS, I had a GREAT meeting with German chancellor Angela Merkel”, the president wrote.

Merkel met with Trump on Friday to discuss a variety of issues in what some have predicted would likely be a tense conference given the two leaders’ differences of opinions on issues like refugees and immigration.

Turning to Merkel, who was angry to find out after leaks by Edward Snowden that the US National Security Agency had tapped her phone, Trump said “at least we have something in common”.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer then quoted Napolitano’s remarks about GCHQ Thursday while defending Trump’s assertions that Obama wiretapped him a year ago.

During what can only be described as a freakish and embarrassing photo op, Ms Merkel shuffles awkwardly in her chair, before leaning in and asking her host: “Do you want to have the handshake?”

Donald Trump is “an unsophisticated yet self-absorbed political neophyte”, according to sections of the German press – in comparison to “experienced” Angela Merkel. Mr. Trump has always been critical of Merkel, particularly as it relates to her policy on refugees: during the campaign, he disparagingly referred to Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton as “America’s Angela Merkel,” and once suggested Germans “are going to end up overthrowing this woman” over her refugee policy.

Her pitch came after Trump earlier had declared the two countries “must work together toward fair – but reciprocal – trade policies that benefit both our peoples”. The reception seemed to be slightly chilly though, as the two did not shake hands, At one point, Merkel appeared to lean in and ask Trump if he wished to shake hands and he did not acknowledge the question.

“I don’t believe in an isolationist policy”.

When the subject turned to economic issues, Merkel attempted to project a conciliatory approach.

“We said nothing. All we did was quote a certain very talented legal mind who was the one responsible for saying that on TV”, Trump said.

Trump’s order banning citizens of some majority-Muslim countries from entering the US and a threat to tear up the North American Free Trade Agreement have also unnerved business leaders. Regardless, I don’t think anybody got a good photo out of this one.

Sources of tension between Berlin and the new US administration also include an accusation by a senior Trump adviser that Germany profits unfairly from a weak euro.

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