The bromance between President Trump and his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, took another hit Tuesday as the two exchanged barbs over the fate of captured ISIS fighters from Europe.

Trump chided Macron after pressing France to accept more of its countrymen, echoing a frequent critique of the US’ European allies.

“We have a tremendous amount of captured fighters, ISIS fighters over in Syria. And they are all under lock and key but many are from France, many from Germany and many are from the UK. They’re mostly from Europe,” Trump said during a bilateral sit-down with Macron at the NATO meeting in London.

“And some of the countries are agreeing. I have not spoken to the president about that. Would you like some nice ISIS fighters? I can give them to you. You can take every one you want,” the commander-in-chief said, prompting a sharp rebuke from the French president.

“Let’s be serious. It is true you have current fighters coming from Europe. But it’s a minority problem of the overall problem we have. And I think the number one priority because it is not yet finished is to get rid of ISIS,” Macron told the president.

“And it is not done, I’m sorry to say that. Your number one problem is not the foreign fighters, it is the ISIS fighters in the region and you have more and more of these fighters due to the situation today,” he said.

Trump called the response a “non-answer.”

“It’s why he is a great politician. That was one of the greatest non-answers I’ve ever heard and that’s okay,” Trump said.

Emmanuel Macron (left) and Donald Trump
Emmanuel Macron (left) and Donald TrumpAFP via Getty Images

Trump frequently boasts that he captured “100 percent” of the so-called Caliphate the terrorists established in wide swaths of Iraq and Syria, though fighting continues on the ground amid fears the group could re-form.

The president and Macron were fast friends earlier in Trump’s term, when he was wowed by the country’s Bastille Day military parade, which he hoped to emulate.

They have also hosted each other for state visits and dined at the Eiffel Tower, though the relationship turned south after the French president criticized Trump for withdrawing from Syria and allowing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to invade northern Syria, territory that had been held by the Kurds.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here