BRUSSELS - The European Union, EU, has sharply rebuked US president Donald Trump after he accused Nato allies of failing to spend enough on defence.
European Council President Donald Tusk said Trump criticised Europe "almost daily", adding "Dear America, appreciate your allies, after all you don't have that many."
Mr Tusk added that the EU spent more than Russia on defence, and as much as China.
He said the US did not and would not have a better ally than the EU, reminding the president that European troops had also fought and died in Afghanistan after the 11 September 2001 attacks on the US.
As he and other Nato leaders gather in Brussels for talks, President Trump predicted a harder Nato meeting than his summit with the Russian leader, Vladimir Putin, in Finland next Monday.
President Trump has said that the US is being "taken advantage of" by other members of the Nato alliance, which was set up in 1949 to counter the Soviet Union, of which Russia is the main successor state.
His main objection is that all but a handful of member states have still not increased their defence budgets to meet a goal of spending at least 2% of their annual economic output on defence by 2024.
Of Nato's 29 members, just five meet that target this year: the US, Greece, Estonia, the UK and Latvia. However, several, such as Poland and France are close to the mark.(FA)