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President Donald Trump began a weekend visit to Paris with an attack on his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, for proposing Europe create its own continental military force.

"Very insulting", he added, "but perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, which the US subsidizes greatly!"

As the two men met at the French presidential palace Saturday, Macron called Trump "my good friend" and even appeared to tap him on the thigh.

Macron told Europe 1 radio that the "main victim" of the US withdrawal from the INF accord was Europe and its security.

But in a tweet prior to landing in Paris, Trump took a dim view of comments Macron made in a Europe 1 radio interview this week.

Earlier this week, Emmanuel Macron voiced plans to build a single European army to boost the EU's defence capability as well as military independence from the United States.

Ahead of his arrival in Paris Mr Trump said it was "very insulting" for the French president to suggest that a European army was needed to defend the continent from the consequences of United States foreign policy.

Trump tweeted Saturday that he is in Paris to join other world leaders in marking 100 years since the end of World War I in which millions were killed.

The US President cancelled his visit to the Belleau Wood battlefield and cemetery east of Paris because of 'scheduling and logistical difficulties caused by the weather, ' the White House said.

Trump is joining other world leaders at centennial commemorations in Paris this weekend to mark the end of World War I.

He is also overseeing the formation of a European rapid reaction force, a nine-country endeavour much smaller than an actual army, which is backed by Germany and the UK. Early this year, Trump had hosted Macron on the first State Dinner of his Administration.

The issue comes into sharp focus as leaders commemorate the fallen of a century ago in the war that ended on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

"It should be a very lovely period of time, the 100th anniversary of the ending of World War I".

"That's why I do believe that we need more investment". "I think it's going to be something very special".

Trump had been itching for a fight in the morning too, taking questions and hurling insults during a pop-up presser on the White House lawn as he headed out of town.

The president and first lady Melania Trump were expected to visit several memorial sites in France that are dedicated to American service members.

The two men may meet at a lunch for world leaders on Sunday, but it remains to be seen if a more formal discussion will ultimately materialise.


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