President Donald Trump has a "fairly unbelievable" relationship with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the White House has said, hours after the American leader complained about Germany in a tweet.
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters that the two leaders get along "very well" and are growing a"bond" they had during their talks in the G7.
"The relationship that the President has had with Merkelhe would describe as fairly unbelievable...He has a lot of respect for her," Spicer said.
The press secretary's comments came after Trump, on the social media platrform, said Germany was paying well below itsshare for NATO.
"We have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on NATO & military. Very bad for U.S. This will change," Trump tweeted.
Spicer asserted that Trump views not just Germany, butthe rest of Europe, as an important American allies.
"During his conversations at NATO and at the G7, the president reaffirmed the need to deepen and improve our transatlantic relationship," he said, as reporters asked him about the general impression that all is not well between US and Germany.
Spicer also disputed the media's interpretation of Merkel's remarks that she felt that Europe could no longer depend on the United States."That's not what she said. So since you're misquoting the Chancellor, let me read what she actually said. She said: 'The times when Europe could rely solely on others is somewhat in the past. And as I have witnessed over the past few days,Europe must take its fate into its own hands. This means working in friendship with the US, the UK, and neighborly relations with Russia and other partners," Spicer said.