Trump says US is committed to mutual support of NATO allies

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"Yes, absolutely I would be committed to Article 5", he concluded.

President Donald Trump, right, and Romania's President Klaus Werner Iohannis, left, walk together to a news conference in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Friday, June 9, 2017.

The former top Federal Bureau of Investigation official also said Trump asked him in January to pledge loyalty to the president, an unusual request that would put in doubt the intelligence and security service's independence. 'We had an investigation open at the time so that gave me a queasy feeling, ' he added.

Trump: Go ahead, Jon.

"I'll tell you about that maybe sometime soon", he said.

Rather, Trump must be premeditatedly pushing an alternate reality knowing that his base will believe anything, that if he says something, no matter how obviously incorrect it is, his core supporters are desperate to believe him.

"I hardly know the man", Trump said. I am not going to say: I want you to pledge allegiance. I mean, think of it. It doesn't make sense. No, I didn't say that and I didn't say the other.

Trump was addressing reporters at the White House for the first time since Comey's explosive appearance, in which he branded the president a liar and said he believed he was sacked over his handling of the Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into Russian election meddling.

"His goal is to manipulate media, manipulate the press ..." The Justice Department has acknowledged that Sessions was at the Mayflower Hotel event in Washington, but said there were no private or side conversations that day.

Trump's personal legal team, led by attorney Marc Kasowitz, is said to be focusing the complaint on Comey's disclosure during his appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee that he asked a professor at Columbia University law school to pass on memos he wrote about his private interactions with Trump to a reporter. "Even folks who have been his critics don't question his integrity, his commitment to the rule of law and his intelligence", Warner said. The former Federal Bureau of Investigation chief has said the decision was now in the hands of special counsel Mueller.

Comey's testimony underscored the discord that had soured their relationship.

Trump took it out, completely blindsiding his top national security aides, like Secretary of Defense James and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, who had thought that phrase would remain in the president's speech.

He also accused Qatar, a key USA military partner, of funding terrorism "at a very high level", and said solving the problem in the tiny Persian Gulf nation could be "the beginning of the end of terrorism".

Mr Trump denied having asked for Mr Comey's loyalty or for an inquiry into his former national security adviser to be dropped.

Seven Democrats on the House Armed Services Committee are calling on President Trump to explicitly endorse NATO's mutual defense clause after he declined to do so during a speech last month. Instead, Trump let his lawyer do the talking for him.

There are Trump supporters who read Trump's now famous and inexplicably bad spelling blunder "covfefe"-either a major typo for some mysterious word or the correct spelling for one that doesn't exist-and claimed Trump was writing in Arabic".

Trump was publicly silent while Comey testified on Thursday, but tweeted an accusation Friday that Comey - whom Trump fired in May - lied under oath.

"James Comey confirmed a lot of what I said", Trump said about Comey's testimony from yesterday.

Trump abruptly fired Comey as director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation on May 9, later admitting that the Russian Federation probe was on his mind at the time.

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