Trump has ignored the forum for peace in Paris

Russian President Vladimir Putin talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President Donald Trump as they attend a ceremony at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris as part of commemorations marking the 100th anniversary of the 11 November 1918 armistice
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13 November, 2018

Several world leaders also held bilateral meetings at the events.

On Sunday, hundreds of Parisians massed in the city's Place de la Republique to demonstrate against Trump, who braved the rain elsewhere that morning to recognize the 100th anniversary of the armistice at the Arc de Triomphe.

But Mr. Trump, a leader who has proudly declared himself a "nationalist" and advocated an "America First" approach, stood out at a memorial ceremony that focused on worldwide cooperation.

On Saturday, he and his wife Melania cancelled a trip to Belleau Wood battlefield and cemetery in northern France, citing "scheduling and logistical difficulties" caused by the rainy weather. The Femen group claimed responsibility.

Trump later was attending a leaders' lunch hosted by Macron.

It came a day after Macron and Trump said they'd patched up differences over a twitter tussle, even as the showy friendliness of their past encounters was replaced by a stiffer interaction.

The spat was the latest the two leaders, who struck up a warm relationship initially but have clashed over a growing list of issues, including Trump's decision to pull the USA out of the 2015 Paris climate accord and the Iran nuclear deal.

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While Merkel and Macron are pushing back on "America First", Trump has a growing number of like-minded allies among Europe's leaders, including in Hungary, Italy and Poland, but they're as yet too few to set European policy.

National security adviser John Bolton had said at one point that Putin and Trump would meet in Paris, but they will instead hold a formal sit-down later this month at a world leaders' summit in Buenos Aires. So far it was their first meeting not related with worldwide forums.

Trump returned to Washington late Sunday night. But nationalism has also been associated with movements that led to Word War I and Word War II, including Adolf Hitler and Nazism's German nationalism. Putin has been accused of rigging the 2018 Russian elections. You know what I am? "We have a lot of problems".

As Trump was arriving in France, they fought over Macron's proposal to draft a European army.

But Trump did not broach the divide as he paid tribute Sunday to USA and allied soldiers killed in World War I during "a disgusting, frightful war" that marked America's emergence as a world power.

The Chairman of the party Alexander Gauland harshly criticized the arrival of the Chancellor of France, as the anniversary of the First world war in Paris was intended only for "winners", and Germany was there to remember just dashing in short, the politician believes.

"In a context of challenges to multilateralism, we reaffirm our commitment to existing worldwide organizations as well as our determination to allow them to be even more representative of the global community and shared values", wrote Macron and the heads of worldwide organizations in a joint statement published at the end of the first day of the Paris Peace Forum which opened Sunday. Its role as host of the main global commemoration highlighted the point that the world mustn't stumble into war again, as it did so quickly and catastrophically with World War II.


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