Germany’s special coordinator for Transatlantic ties on Monday criticised U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw thousands of troops from Germany as “completely unacceptable.”
Peter Beyer told the Rheinische Post the White House left Germany in the dark before reports of the decision began to emerge, according to the Reuters news service.
As Breitbart News reported, last Friday Trump ordered the Pentagon to slash the number of troops it maintains in Germany by more than a quarter before the end of the year.
That move would mean the Defense Department would cut the number of military personnel by 9,500 from the current 34,500 permanently assigned to Germany postings.
It would also significantly reduce the U.S. commitment to European defense under the NATO banner.
“This is completely unacceptable, especially since nobody in Washington thought about informing its NATO ally Germany in advance,” Beyer, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives, told the newspaper.
A U.S. senior official told the Wall Street Journal internal discussions have been continuing since September and the move is not in retaliation to German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision decline the G-7 meeting in Washington.
Following Trump’s decision, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said in a different interview he regretted the planned withdrawal, describing Berlin’s relationship with the United States as “complicated.”
AP contributed to this report