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Datum objave: 24.05.2017

Air Force One with President Donald Trump on-board lands in Melsbroek tarmac outside Brussels

The US President is now on his way to the Royal Palace where he and his wife will be greeted by King Philippe and Queen Mathilde

Air Force One with President Donald Trump on-board lands in Melsbroek tarmac outside Brussels

President Donald Trump arrived in Brussels on Wednesday at 16h12 landing at Melsbroek Military Airport.

He arrived from a short trip to Rome where met with Pope François in the morning.

Mr Trump and his wife Melania were welcomed on the tarmac by Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel and his partner Amélie Derbaudrenghien.

The US President is now on his way to the Royal Palace where he and his wife will be greeted by King Philippe and Queen Mathilde. He will thereafter have a short work meeting with Charles Michel in the palace.

On Thursday Mr Trump will begin the day meeting the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

He is also scheduled to have lunch with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron. They will both participate in a NATO summit in the afternoon which will gather government officials from all its member states. 

Maria Novak  The Brussels Times

Charles Michel will meet Donald Trump at the Royal Palace

Prime Minister Charles Michel will meet with US President Donald Trump at the Royal Palace in Brussels on Wednesday.

Before that, Donald Trump and his wife, Melania, will be received by an audience of King Philip and Queen Mathilde, said the cabinet of the Prime Minister on Monday morning, two days before the arrival of President Trump in Belgium. This weekend the US president began his first trip abroad since taking his oath. He first stopped over in Saudi Arabia and is now in Israel. He will arrive in Belgium on Wednesday and will be received on the same day at the Royal Palace before a work meeting with Charles Michel.

On Thursday, Donald Trump will inaugurate the new NATO headquarters and participate in the NATO meeting.

Sarah Johansson The Brussels Times

Trump gets festive welcome in Brussels, a city he once called a 'hellhole'

Is NATO 'obsolete' or not? Trump and military alliance aim to work out differences

BRUSSELS –  After months of tension, President Trump and leaders of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization come face-to-face Thursday for meetings likely to revolve around two issues: Washington's commitment to the military alliance that has defined western political unity for nearly seven decades, and military contributions from the rest of its members.

While Trump has retracted his often-repeated campaign claim that NATO is "obsolete" in the modern age of terrorism, the still-new president who views himself as dealmaker-in-chief is expected to demand that NATO countries make good on pledges to increase its defense spending to 2% of gross domestic product, a heavy lift for some European countries.

Yet NATO leaders making progress toward this 2% goal say they want something from Trump in turn: A public recommitment to Article 5 of the NATO treaty, the common defense pledge in which members agree that an attack on one NATO member is an attack on all.

Donald Trump arrives in Belgium: what's on the agenda?

The American President Donald Trump is landing in Brussels around 4 o'clock this afternoon. He has a busy agenda in Brussels both tonight and tomorrow, before leaving for Sicily around 9 tomorrow evening, to attend a G7 summit. Trump will be meeting the Belgian PM Charles Michel and King Filip, and will join a NATO meeting, but there is a lot more on his agenda

Donald Trump and First Lady Melania's Air Force One will touch down in Zaventem at Brussels Airport, but are expected to leave the aircraft at Melsbroek's military airport. During the transfer from the airport to the Royal Castle in the centre of Brussels, the Inner Ring Road and the E40 Motorway will be closed

In the Royal Palace, Trump will have a meeting with King Filip of the Belgians of about 15 minutes before talking to PM Charles Michel (45 minutes scheduled, 'see read also'). At the palace, there will also be a photo moment. Queen Mathilde will take on the role as host and guide for Melania and inform her about Child Focus, the centre for missing children, while Trump is engaging in conversation with Michel.

Around 5PM, a demonstration against Trump and NATO will start at the North Station. Organisers are hoping to welcome over 10,000 protesters, such as climate, women's rights and world peace campaigners.

Note that this is not an official state visit to Belgium, but rather a NATO visit in the first place. This means no special reception ceremony.

Hotel or embassy?

It remains a secret where Trump will spend the night. Barack Obama used to stay in The Hotel in the centre, but Trump is expected to sleep at another, secret location. This could be the residence at the American embassy, though this has not been confirmed. Melania is poised to stay in The Hotel, together with the rest of the American team.

Michel and Macron

Thursday will be the busiest day.

The morning sees a works meeting with Charles Michel and the French President Emmanuel Macron.

Next comes a trip to the European quarters where Trump will Jean-Claude Juncker and Antonio Tajani, Donald Tusk and Federica Mogherini (the presidents of the European Commission, European Parliament, the European Council and the High Representative for Foreign Affairs respectively).

Trump and Macron are next expected to have a private meeting at the American embassy during a working lunch.

The NATO gathering should start at 3 o'clock in Evere, where the newly-built NATO premises will be inaugurated. Though it is not an official NATO summit, the 29 heads of state and government are expected to discuss the future of the military partnership and each country's financial contribution. Trump said various times in the past that smaller NATO allies (like Belgium) will have to contribute more.

A working dinner will start around 6, after a couple of ceremonies. Fighter jets will paint the Belgian colours in the sky, and the Belgians will officially hand over the keys of the NATO building in a symbolic act.

Trump and his team are leaving again after some 29 hours on Belgian soil, around 9, to fly to Sicily for a G7 summit.

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President Trump arrives in Belgium, Brussels. May 24, 2017. President Trump in Belgium. Brussels.

President Trump meets with Prime Minister of Belgium Charles Michel. President Trump in Belgium.

President Trump and Melania meet the Belgian Royals

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