Trump says committed to NATO as allies up spending

US President Donald Trump addresses a press conference on the second day of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) summit in Brussels on July 12, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 12 July 2018
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Trump says committed to NATO as allies up spending

  • Alliance Secretary-General says Trump’s actions have made NATO stronger
  • Donald Trump says the United States' commitment to NATO 'remains very strong'

BRUSSELS: US President Donald Trump said on Thursday that the United States’ commitment to NATO “remains very strong” after a summit in Brussels at which he said allies had made unprecedented commitments to increase spending on their own defense.
“NATO is much stronger now than it was two days ago,” Trump told reporters, describing an unscheduled crisis meeting of the 29 alliance leaders on Thursday morning as “fantastic” and having “a great collegial spirit.”
“The US were not treated fairly but now we are. I believe in NATO,” Trump told a press conference after the fraught NATO summit in Brussels.

Later alliance Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told a press conference that Trump’s actions had made NATO stronger.

Asked about a closed-door meeting in which officials said Trump told allies to reach a NATO target or the United States would "go it alone", Stoltenberg said: "We had a very frank and open discussion... That discussion has made NATO stronger. It has created a new sense of urgency," he said.

"The fact that we had this open discussion has also clearly stated that we will redouble our efforts and it also shows that a clear message from President Trump is having an impact."


Philippine army arrests wife of top Islamist militant in south

Updated 8 min 3 sec ago
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Philippine army arrests wife of top Islamist militant in south

MANILA: Philippine soldiers arrested the wife of a top leader of a pro-Daesh militant group, and killed a suspected bomber in separate raids in a southern city, the army said on Monday.
Nafisa Pundog, who had been in hiding for two years since her escape from prison, was arrested in General Santos City, said army spokesman Major Ezra Balagtey.
Her husband Human Abdul Najib, alias Abu Dar, is the new leader of the pro-Daesh Maute group, which seized the lakeside town of Marawi for five months last year, he added.
“She did not resist arrest,” Balagtey told reporters, adding that materials to make improvised bombs were seized from her hideout.
Before the arrest, soldiers killed Najib Pundog, a suspected bomb maker, not far from the hideout. “He chose to shoot it out with soldiers who tracked him down in his safe house,” Balagtey said.
Both individuals, who are not related, despite a shared surname, were on a list of those President Rodrigo Duterte ordered to be arrested when he imposed martial law on the southern island of Mindanao after the Marawi attack in May 2017.
More than 1,100 people died in the five-month conflict in Marawi, which ended days after soldiers killed the militant leaders, Omarkhayam Maute and Isnilon Hapilon, the emir of the Southeast Asian militant group.