Pence: Patience of American people being tested by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation

Juncker has backed Merkel's comments

GETTYMerkel's defiance has been met with backing from the president of the European Commission

Pence, who was wrapping up his first visit to Europe as vice president, reiterated much of what he told leaders at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Saturday will seek to soothe allies unnerved by his boss' unorthodox statements on Russian Federation and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) as he stresses America's commitment to Europe during the first major foreign address for the Trump administration.

"Let me say, I'm very grateful for the close working relationship I have with the president of the United States", Pence said.

Worries spiked even higher after a former USA diplomat, Ted Malloch, said he was in the running to become Mr. Trump's US envoy to the EU.

On Monday, Pence voiced a different message to the European Union as he pledged to support and cooperate with the worldwide body.

In other remarks at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation headquarters, Pence said that the USA president "expects real progress" from European governments by the end of the year in increasing their spending on military budgets closer to a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation target of 2 percent of GDP.

Mr. Pence and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis were deployed to Europe last week to try to calm fears about a shift in USA foreign policy attitudes that have otherwise remained constant since 1945.

European fears of Trump's attitude toward the European Union spiked when Trump said shortly before his inauguration that he was indifferent to the fate of the bloc and that he expected that more countries would split from it in the coming years.

"But you can anticipate that the president and all of us will continue to call out the media when play fast and loose with the facts", Pence said during a news conference Monday from Brussels.

But the new administration has since softened it's tone.

And after Mr. Trump went after the media as the "enemy of the American people" last week, Pence said both he and Mr. Trump believe in a "free and independent press" - but that he will continue to "call out" the media when they get things wrong.

"I fully support the president's decision to ask for his resignation", Pence said when asked if the administration kept him out of the loop on Flynn's contacts. "And I have great confidence in the national security team in this administration going forward".

US media reported that the Justice Department had warned the White House that Flynn had misled senior administration officials about the contents of his talks with Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, and that it could make him vulnerable to Russian blackmail.

"The United States' commitment to the European Union is steadfast and enduring", he said.

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