Trump flies home early after leaders caught mocking him
Justin Trudeau and other leaders filmed laughing about US president
Donald Trump cut short his stay at the Nato summit in London after a group of leaders were caught on video apparently ridiculing the US president for his lengthy press conferences.
The Guardian says the “notoriously thin-skinned” Trump was “furious” about the video, which features leaders including Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, UK PM Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, as well as Princess Anne, at the Buckingham Palace event.
After mentioning “a 40-minute press conference off the top”, Trudeau tells the group: “You just watched his team’s jaws drop to the floor.” There was much laughter during the exchange.
While Trump was not mentioned by name, he was the only leader to hold a press conference of that length of time at the summit, says CNN. He is believed to be livid about the footage and was confronted about it later.
“Well, he’s two-faced,” Trump said of Trudeau. “I find him to be a very nice guy but you know the truth is that I called him out the fact that he’s not paying 2% [into Nato] and I can see he’s not very happy about it. He’s not paying 2% and he should be paying 2%. Canada – they have money.”
He was then himself caught on a hot mic himself, saying: “That was funny when I said the guy’s two-faced, you know that.”
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The US president then tweeted: “When today’s meetings are over, I will be heading back to Washington... We won’t be doing a press conference at the close of Nato because we did so many over the past two days. Safe travels to all!”
Later in the evening, he sent another tweet, complaining that “the Fake News Media is doing everything possible to belittle my VERY successful trip to London for NATO” and insisting “I got along great with the NATO leaders”.
Trudeau tried to play down the issue, saying: “We had a great meeting yesterday between me and the president... Last night I made a reference to the fact there was an unscheduled press conference before my meeting with President Trump, I was happy to take part in it but it was certainly notable.”
Johnson claimed to be unaware of the footage. Asked about it at his own press conference, he said: “That’s complete nonsense. I don’t know where that’s come from. I really don’t know what’s being referred to there.”
Trump has received at least one message of support over the video. Writing in the Daily Mail, his admirer Piers Morgan slammed the leaders for “sniggering and bitching away like spiteful little Mean Girls about US President Donald Trump, the modern-day Caesar”.
Morgan added: “Trump hasn’t been humiliated at all. The real embarrassment is on them, not him.”