*From:* Nadia Bilbassy <xxx@alarabiya.net>
*Sent:* Thursday, May 17, 2018 3:11 PM
*Subject:* Foreign pool report#1 with NATO Secretary General

Pool entered oval at 1:47 , Both leaders were seated . Mr Stolenberg credited POTUS with increase of the military defense spending for NATO members which POTUS agreed, and took the complement .
The Secretary General thanked the President for the leadership "which it has an impact" , he added, he said that all allies are increasing their defense budget. He said that we live in an unpredictable world and we need a strong leadership.

Mr Stolenberg didnt say much apart from his statement .POTUS dominated the Oval spry answering multiple questions mainly on North Korea and on trade with China for almost 15 minutes .

On the NK summit and whether it will happen or not , he said, "We have not been told anything.. If the meeting happens, it happens and if it doesn't we go into the next step."

He was asked by reporters if he was upset by Mr Bolton's holding an analogous situation between Libya persuaded to give up its chemical weapons and a potential scenario with North Korea, POTUS dismissed the analogy and said:
"In Libya we decimated that country. There was no deal to keep Qadaffi in power, The Libyan model was a much different model" with no assurance of protecting him or providing military aid. In NK, "That model would take place if we don't make a deal."

He implies the will offer Kim Jong Un protection in return for denuclearization , "I'm willing to do a lot... He'll have protections...The best thing he could do is make a deal."


He also seem to imply NK tough talks on not holding the summit came after the second visit of Mr Kim to China.

He was asked about the trade war with China , POTUS said "We lost 800 billion on trade last year , he blamed Previous US President for not being able to negotiation better deals with China. he said, you can't lose the trade war. You've already lost it."

He was asked about ZTE and said that President Xi asked him to look into it. Emphasized that it was the Trump administration with his full knowledge that had penalized the firm to begin with. "they did very bad things to our country. they did a lot of bad things to our economy." But he added, the firm buys a lot of components from US suppliers.


Nadia Bilbassy-Charters
Alarabiya Bureau Chief

Public Pool is an automated feed of White House press pool reports. For live updates, follow @WHPublicPool on Twitter.