U.S. President Donald Trump seemed reluctant to shake hands with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a photo-op of their first face-to-face meeting on Friday.
In a video of the two leaders' press conference in the White House, reporters can be heard shouting "handshake" as the two pose for photographs.
At some point, Merkel bends towards Trump and, according to some reports, asks him if they should shake hands for the cameras while Trump seems unfazed.
However, earlier the U.S. president greeted the long-serving stateswoman at the White House with a handshake upon her arrival before they began talks in the Oval Office.
During the meeting, Trump reiterated his strong support for NATO and pressed Merkel to meet NATO's military spending target.
The meeting between the leader of Europe's largest economy and the U.S. president was billed as one that could help determine the future of the transatlantic alliance and shape their working relationship.
"I reiterated to Chancellor Merkel my strong support for NATO as well as the need for our NATO allies to pay their fair share for the cost of defense," Trump said at a joint news conference with Merkel.
Merkel said she told Trump Germany needs to meet NATO spending goals. The two also discussed Ukraine and Afghanistan.
Trump said he expected the United States to do "fantastically well" in trade with Germany, while Merkel said she hoped the United States and the European Union could resume discussions on a trade agreement. Trump said he did not believe in isolationism but that trade policy should be fairer.
"We held a conversation where we were trying to address also those areas where we disagree, but we tried to bring people together ... (and) tried to find a compromise that is good for both sides," Merkel said.
Trump said he "very seldom" regrets anything he tweets, brushing off questions about his claims without evidence that his predecessor, Democrat Barack Obama, wiretapped him during last year's presidential campaign.
Trump said, "At least we have something in common," apparently referring to reports during Obama's presidency that the United States bugged her phone. Congressional leaders from both political parties say they do not believe Trump was wiretapped.
The meeting is consequential for both sides.
As a presidential candidate, Trump criticized Merkel for allowing hundreds of thousands of refugees into Germany. At the news conference, Merkel hinted at differences, saying: "This is obviously something we had an exchange of views about."
Relationship building is a less overt but important agenda item. Merkel had close relations with Trump's Democratic and Republican predecessors, Barack Obama and George W. Bush, and she is likely to seek a strong working relationship with Trump despite major policy differences and wariness in Germany about the former New York businessman.
"Those who know the chancellor know that she has a knack for winning over people in personal discussions. I am sure that Donald Trump will not be immune," said Juergen Hardt, a conservative lawmaker who helps coordinate transatlantic relations for the German government.
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