Steffan Seibert said US president Donald Trump did not give Angela Merkel a huge bill of £300bn
The German federal government came out swinging over claims that Mrs Merkel was left red-faced after being handed the huge bill during her visit to Washington this month.
Reports suggested that the American leader had instructed aides to work out what Germany would owe to the defence organisation.
The bill was said to have taken into account how much Germany underspent since 2002, when Chancellor Merkel’s predecessor, Gerhard Schröder, pledged to spend more on defence. It was estimated to have reached £250billion with £50billion of interest added into the total.
But Steffan Seibert, a spokesperson for the German government rubbished such claims on Monday.
He said: “Reports that President Trumo had presented the Federal Chancellor with a kind of bill on a concrete billion sum does not apply.”
Nato member countries pledged to contribute two per cent of GDP to Nato in 2014. And Mr Trump has been a vocal critic of those who he sees as failing to add their portion to the fund.
Shortly after their frosty meeting in Washington, when Mr Trump refused to shake the German leader’s hand, he took to Twitter to question Germany’s record on defence spending.
Reports suggested that Trump came up with the sum during Merkel's trip to Washington
He tweeted: “Despite what you have heard from the FAKE NEWS, I had a GREAT meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
“Germany owes… vast sums of money to Nato & the United States must be paid more for the powerful, and very expensive, defence it provides to Germany!"
He then blasted that the US has been forced to shoulder the financial burden of NATO.
But a day after his twitter tirade, German defence minister Ursula von der Leyen hit back at his claims.
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She said: “There is no account where debts are registered with
German defence minister Ursula von der Leyen also hit back at Trump's claims earlier this month
“Defence spending also goes into UN peacekeeping missions, into our European missions and into our contribution to the fight against ISIS terrorism.”
She said that it was wrong to refer to NATO's common goal of spending two percent of the economic output for defense by 2024.
She argued that the money went on other things – like United Nations peace keeping efforts and the collective fight against terrorism.
During the trip to Washington D.C, it was public knowledge that Mr Trump and Mrs Merkel did discuss defence expenditure on Nato according to Mr Seibert.
However, Germany has openly committed to paying more money into Nato in a bid to strengthen it.
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