The White House announced Tuesday night that President Trump will be traveling to Brussels in May to meet with NATO leaders.
The president will attend the “leaders meeting” scheduled by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg for May 25, 2017.
According to a White House statement, Trump will “reaffirm our strong commitment to NATO” and “discuss issues critical to the alliance.”
Issues that the president is likely to bring up include NATO’s role in the war on terror and increased sharing of responsibility by other NATO members.
This meeting comes just after the state department announced that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson would skip a NATO meeting in April in order to attend a meeting between President Trump and China’s Xi Jinping.
Tillerson intends to miss what would have been his first meeting of the 28 NATO allies on April 5-6 in Brussels so that he can attend President Donald Trump’s expected April 6-7 talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, four current and former U.S. officials said.
Fake news reports shaped stories to make it appear as though Tillerson was skipping NATO to go to Russia, but the Russia trip is a full week after the scheduled NATO conference.
The State Department scrambled Tuesday to suggest new dates for Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to attend a meeting of NATO foreign ministers after his plan to skip the annual gathering — but travel to Russia — came to light.
The department of state scrambled Tuesday to clear up what can only be described as terrible messaging.
A State Department spokeswoman said Tillerson would meet on Wednesday with foreign ministers from 26 of the 27 other NATO countries — all but Croatia — at a gathering of the coalition working to defeat the Islamic State militant group.