The Latest: Trump, Macron try to project the unit

PARIS – The latest about President Donald Trump in France (all local times):

12:55

President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron are trying to project unity after Trump lashed out against one of the strongest American allies in Europe.

Trump had claimed that Macron would insult the United States when the French president pushed the idea that the continent had its own defense force.

The American and French leaders had an up-and-down relationship, but they told reporters that they were good friends as they prepared for talks at Elysee Palace on Saturday.

The meeting was the first stage of Trump on a weekend trip to Paris, where dozens of world leaders are gathering to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.

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6:35 pm

President Donald Trump is criticized for not finding a way to visit a cemetery in France for the Americans killed in the First World War.

Trump was supposed to visit the cemetery on Saturday, but the White House canceled the trip due to bad weather, which grounded the presidential helicopter that was to take him to Belleau, about two hours' drive east of Paris. The White House sent a delegation that included the chief of staff John Kelly in his place.

David Frum, once a writer of speeches for President George W. Bush, tweeted that he thought it was "incredible" that a president went to France for a World War I ceremony and did not respect the US military who died in France during the WWI.

Trump is to visit another cemetery on Sundays.

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2:20 pm

French officials say the Trump administration has agreed to consult with NATO partners on its plan to extrapolate an arms control treaty with Russia.

Aid to French President Emmanuel Macron said the decision was made during a meeting between President Donald Trump and Macron in Paris on Saturday.

The White House has not immediately commented. But Trump's national security advisor, John Bolton, told reporters in Paris on Friday that the United States is in "close consultation" with the allies on the treaty issue and they are "very optimistic about a common position".

The United States and NATO have accused Russia of violating the treaty of intermediate-range nuclear forces.

Trump's decision to break out of the pact has worried many in Europe, where the treaty is seen as a cornerstone of the post-Cold War era. Macron warned that if its demolition and Russia deploy such missiles, they could easily reach Europe but not the United States.

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12:55

The White House is recalling the planned visit of President Donald Trump to a World War I cemetery due to bad weather.

Trump was scheduled for Saturday to visit the American cemetery of Aisne-Marne, near the village of Belleau, in France. It is the site of a 1918 battle in which the American and the French repulsed the German forces. More than 1800 Americans died there.

The battle looms large in the history of the United States Marine Corps. Trump would have to participate in a garland pose and a moment of silence on the site.

It rained in Paris all day and time prevented Trump from arriving by helicopter at the site, which is more than 50 miles east of the French capital.

White House chief John Kelly, a retired Marine Corps General, will visit his wife and secretary of state Mike Pompeo instead.

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11:35

President Donald Trump is assuring that the United States will "help" European defense, but has reiterated its insistence that the nations of the continent pay their fair share.

Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron met on Saturday after an audience spat the French leader's suggestion that Europe should rely less on the United States.

Trump said Macron "understands that the United States can only do so much." But he also made it clear that the United States is not disengaging, declaring "we want to help".

Macron has created something of "Trump's whisper" in Europe and has a close relationship with the president.

Their Saturday meeting, however, included declarations of friendship, but they lacked their previous manifestations of warmth.

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half past eleven

French President Emmanuel Macron is defending his drive for a stronger European defense in a meeting with President Donald Trump.

While the two men met Saturday at the French presidential palace, Macron called Trump "my good friend" and even seemed to touch him on the thigh. The two men had an up-and-down relationship.

Their meeting had a tense beginning after Trump called it "offensive" that Macron wants a European army. Macron defended the idea by saying "It is not right that European security is assured today by the United States".

"That's why I believe we need more European capabilities and more defense to take this part of the burden," he said. He says states in the United States do not ask France, Germany or other countries to finance their armies.

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11:15

President Donald Trump meets with President of France Emmanuel Macron.

Trump stopped on Saturday in his limousine at Eliseo, where he was welcomed by Macron.

The two men shook hands for a while and ignored the shouts of questions about Trump's criticism of his French guest who delivered while he had landed in Paris the night before.

Friday Trump tweeted that Macron "has just suggested that Europe will build its own army to protect itself from the United States, China and Russia, adding that it was" very offensive "to the United States and suggested that" Europe should first pay its fair share of NATO ".

The Macron office says that Trump misunderstood the comments.

Trump is in Paris to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.

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10:45

The office of the French president Emmanuel Macron states that President Donald Trump is confused by the push of French President Emmanuel Macron for Europe to create its own army.

Friday Trump tweeted that Macron "has just suggested that Europe build its own army to protect itself from the United States, China and Russia". Trump said he was "very offensive" to the United States and suggested that "Europe should first pay off its much of NATO, which the US subsidizes a lot!"

A Macron office official said on Saturday that Macron did not say this.

The French official, who has not been authorized to be named publicly, says that Trump has grouped two different comments from the French president.

Macron said in an interview this week that Europe needs to protect itself from "China, Russia and even the United States" in terms of cyberspace. Subsequently, Macron reiterated that Europe needs to build its own army because it can no longer depend on the United States for defense.

The two men will meet in Paris on Saturday and Macron's office says this problem will be on the table.

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9:52

President Donald Trump asks if there is anything better than celebrating the end of a war.

Trump tweeted Saturday that he is in Paris to join other world leaders in 100 years since the end of the First World War in which millions have been killed. The centenary is Sunday.

The president asks on Twitter: "Is there anything better to celebrate than the end of a war, especially that, which was one of the bloodiest and worst ever?"

Before Sunday's festivities begin, Trump will meet on Saturday with French President Emmanuel Macron.

Trump and first lady Melania Trump will also visit the American cemetery in Belleau, France, on Saturday to pay tribute to US soldiers who died in France during the war.

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For more information on the First World War, go to the Associated Press's First World War hub: https://www.apnews.com/WorldWarI

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, transmitted, rewritten or redistributed.

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