Trump: NATO obsolete, Merkel wrong, Brexit OK

NATO is "obsolete," Germany's Angela Merkel made a "catastrophic mistake" on refugees, Brexit will be "great" and the United States could cut a deal with Russia: U.S. President-elect Donald Trump unleashed a volley of broadsides on Jan. 15 in interviews with European media.

Five days before his inauguration as the 45th president of the U.S., the billionaire populist let loose a torrent of controversial comments about European allies in interviews with British newspaper The Times and Germany's Bild.

He extended a hand to Russia, which has been hit by a string of sanctions under his predecessor Barack Obama over Moscow's involvement in Ukraine, the Syrian war and for alleged cyber-attacks to influence the U.S. election.

"Let's see if we can make some good deals with Russia," Trump said in remarks carried by The Times.

The U.S. president-elect suggested a deal in which nuclear arsenals would be reduced and sanctions against Moscow would be eased, but gave no details.

"Russia's hurting very badly right now because of sanctions, but I think something can happen that a lot of people are gonna benefit," said the president-elect, who has previously expressed admiration for Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

Washington's European allies imposed sanctions against Russia over Ukraine in 2014. Those measures were renewed on Dec. 19, 2016.

In comments set to cause further consternation among Eastern European NATO countries nervous about Moscow following Russia's annexation of Crimea and involvement in Ukraine, Trump said NATO was "obsolete." 

"I said a long time ago that NATO had problems," Trump told The Times of London and Bild, Germany's biggest-selling daily.

"Number one, it was obsolete, because it...

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