Donald Trump has wasted no time taking a poke at his French host as he arrived in Paris for events marking the 100th anniversary of the  armistice that ended the First World War, tweeting as he landed that President Emmanuel Macron had made an “insulting” proposal to build up Europe's military to counter the US, China and Russia. 

It was a clear sign that the “America First” president was ready to chart his own course yet again as world leaders gathered to remember the coalition that brought an end to the first global war. Trump's visit comes on the heels of midterm elections in which Americans delivered a split referendum on his presidency, keeping the Senate in his party's control but ceding the House to opposition Democrats. 

He planned to meet with Macron on Saturday for talks on topics expected to include European security, Syria and Iran. As he arrived, Mr Trump tweeted that Mr Macron “has just suggested that Europe build its own military in order to protect itself from the U.S., China and Russia. Very insulting, but perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of NATO, which the U.S. subsidizes greatly!” 

Mr Trump's brief visit to Europe comes amid uncertainty about the US relationship with the continent. Mr Trump has railed against trade deals with the European Union and has criticised some EU nations, including France, for not spending enough to defense to sustain Nato, the decades-old Western alliance formed as a bulwark to Moscow's aggression. 

Mr Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, said in Paris that the US was concerned about stability in Europe and that Mr Trump was not shirking from global engagement. “I think the enduring lesson (of World War I) for the United States is that when you become a global power ... you have global interests to protect,” Mr Bolton said. “Great world leaders,” he said, are “driven by national interests.” 

For Sunday's armistice anniversary, Mr Trump was to join world leaders at a ceremony in the shadow of the Arc de Triomphe. 

“It should be a very beautiful period of time, the 100th anniversary of the ending of World War I. We have many countries — the leadership from many countries will be there, especially since they heard the United States will be there. And we look forward to that,” Mr Trump said

Mr Trump originally wanted to celebrate Veterans Day on Sunday with a grand military parade in Washington, as he was inspired by the tanks and flyovers he saw during France's Bastille Day celebration when he visited Paris in July of last year. Mr Trump ordered the Pentagon to come up with plans for his own version, but they were eventually scrapped over concerns about costs and the damage tanks weighing many tons would do to the streets in Washington. 

To follow how the day unfolded see our live coverage below

Hello and welcome to The Independent's coverage of the US president's trip to Paris.
Donald Trump will presumably be only too glad to get away after the White House became embroiled in controversy over its decision to revoke the press pass of CNN reporter Jim Acosta, accused of shoving an intern at a heated question-and-answer session.
 
Accusations that footage of the incident was subsequently doctored to justify the decision have caused outrage and immediately overshadowed the Republicans' performance in the midterm elections.
The president is in France ahead of the Armistice Day centenary services on Remembrance Sunday, paying tribute to the fallen soldiers who lost their lives in the First World War, which came to an end precisely 100 years ago.
Donald Trump is among around 60 world leaders attending the commemorations in Paris.
 
The president and the first lady Melania Trump will visit two memorial sites to pay tribute to Americans who laid down their lives during the First World War.
 
According to the White House, "the visit will highlight the enduring relationship between the United States and France, and emphasize the important role of the United States in ensuring security in Europe and around the world."
 
Mr Trump is also due to hold a bilateral meeting with the French president Emmanuel Macron "to discuss opportunities to advance our shared security interests and promote fair and reciprocal economic ties."
 
Russian president Vladimir Putin will also be in Paris but it remains unclear whether he will meet Mr Trump over the weekend.
 
The Kremlin indicated the pair would meet briefly during a "working lunch" at the Elysee Palace on 11 November while the US president said they would "probably not" meet until the G20 summit in Argentina at the end of the month.
 
Families of those killed when flight MH-17 was shot down over Ukraine have called on Mr Trump to press Mr Putin for answers over the 2014 air disaster.
 


 
The US has already invited Mr Putin to Washington for talks in early 2019.
 

White House invites Putin to Washington 'in early 2019'

Meeting will involve a 'full day of consultations,' John Bolton says
In Paris Donald Trump will also be reunited with the baby blimp that was flown in London in July.
 
The inflatable is expected to be part of a protest at the Place de la Republique on 11 November. Its organisers say that inviting the US President to the Armistice commemorations "is an insult that we refuse to accept" because he is "waging war against us all".
 

The convoy carrying Theresa May and the Belgan prime minister Charles Michel has been involved in a crash, according to reports.
 
It is thought that the collision involved an outrider vehicle rather than the prime minister's car.
 
Ms May is visiting war cemeteries in Belgium and France alongside French President Emmanuel Macron and Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel. They began with a visit to the St Symphorien Military Cemetery in Mons on Friday morning.
 


 
 
Two policemen were injured in the accident but the prime ministers were unharmed, according to Belgian media reports.
 
It happened as convoy travelled from the St Symphorien Military Cemetery to NATO headquarters in the village of Casteau.
 
Two motorcyclists collided after another vehicle entered the convoy and the Belgian prime minister asked his driver to stop so they could check on the injured officers, it was reported in De Standaard.
 
A spokesman for the Belgian prime minister described it as a "regrettable accident". The police officers were taken to hospital.
The meeting between Emmanuel Macron and Donald Trump comes at a time of increasing tension between the US and Europe.
 
One dispute centres on the nuclear deal with Iran, which the EU has vowed to support despite Mr Trump's decision to impose new sanctions.
 
In August the US president warned that "anyone doing business with Iran will NOT be doing business with the United States".
 
And following Mr Trump's decision to pull out of a nuclear disarmament treaty with Russia, Mr Macron has called for the creation of a European army to defend itself from "China, Russia and even the United States of America."
 
Both leaders are under pressure domestically, with Mr Trump attempting to remain defiant despite the losing Congress to the Democrats and Mr Macron's popularity in France sinking to a new low.
 

Emmanuel Macron calls for creation of a ‘true European army’ to defend against Russia and the US

French president makes new appeal for force in run-up to First World War Armistice centenary
 
Downing Street has said that Theresa May was not involved in the traffic accident in Belgium.
 
Ms May was travelling in a car at the front of the motorcade at the time of the collision and would not have seen it, according to a spokesman for the Belgian prime minister.
 
She is currently having a working lunch with French President Emmanuel Macron in Albert and is due to lay a wreath at the Thiepval Memorial this afternoon.
 
The accident happened when a motorist attempted to overtake the motorcade before veering back across into the middle of the convoy, causing two outriders to lose control and hit the car carrying the Belgian prime minister, it is claimed.
Donald Trump has said he will make a decision on nominating a new US ambassador to the United Nations by the end of the year.

He told reporters at the White House that he was considering Heather Nauert, spokeswoman for the US State Department, and other people for the post to succeed Nikki Haley, who said last month she would resign at the end of the year.

Trump denies doctored Acosta video shared by White House was doctored

Donald Trump has denied a video of his altercation with CNN reporter Jim Acosta that was shared by White House was "doctored", despite clear evidence it had been manipulated.  Footage tweeted by press secretary Sarah Sanders on Thursday appeared to show Mr Acosta karate-chopping a female intern during the president's post-midterms press conference, along with the claim the journalist had "placed his hands"
Donald Trump said he had signed an immigration proclamation, an order that would help effectively ban migrants who cross the US border with Mexico illegally from qualifying for asylum.

The Trump administration unveiled new rules on Thursday to sharply limit migrant asylum claims by barring individuals who cross the US southern border illegally from seeking asylum. People have to come into the US at points of entry, Mr Trump said before leaving for Paris.

The plan, which invokes the same authority President Trump used to justify his travel ban on citizens of several Muslim-majority nations, is likely to be quickly challenged in court.

The Trump administration lost a court bid on Thursday, when a federal appeals court in California ruled that it must continue a program begun under former president Barack Obama that protects hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants who were brought into the country as children, known as Dreamers.

Mr Trump said the ruling on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was good news because now the administration can appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Trump hits out at 'phoney hoax' Russia investigation for Mueller not being confirmed by US Senate

President says special counsel should have been confirmed by the Senate - despite no such requirement existing
Donald Trump said he did not discuss the US special counsel's ongoing Russia investigation with Matt Whitaker before appointing him as acting attorney general this week.

Speaking to reporters at the White House, Mr Trump also said he had not ruled out sitting down for an interview with the special counsel, Robert Mueller, who is probing alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election and any possible collusion with Mr Trump's campaign.

"I didn't speak to Matt Whitaker about it," Mr Trump said of the Russia probe.

Mr Whitaker took over the top job at the Justice Department on Wednesday after Mr Trump asked for the resignation of Jeff Sessions.
 
A spokeswoman said Mr Whitaker would oversee all matters under the department's jurisdiction, including the Russia investigation.

Mr Whitaker has publicly criticised the probe as being too broad, and Democrats have called on him to recuse himself, saying his appointment this week appeared to be an effort by the president to impede the investigation.

Mr Trump said it was up to Mr Whitaker whether he would be involved in the investigation.
 
"No matter who I put in, they go after him," he said. "It's very sad."

Russia has denied interfering in the election, and Mr Trump has repeatedly said there was no collusion between his campaign and Moscow. 
Donald Trump is heading to Paris on a post-midterms trip to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day. 

President Trump departed Washington on Friday morning for the weekend jaunt to Europe, which comes just days after elections that delivered a split referendum on his presidency. 

He said of the trip: "I think it's going to be something very special." 

Mr Trump will be joining fellow world leaders at a Sunday ceremony commemorating the 100th anniversary of the agreement that ended World War I. He will also be meeting with France's president, Emmanuel Macron. He's also planning to visit several memorial sites dedicated to American service members in honor of Veterans Day. 

But he'll be skipping the inaugural Paris Peace Forum that's set to kick off on Sunday. 
Here are some more remarks from the president about his trip:

“We’re heading off to Europe. It should be a very beautiful period of time, the 100th anniversary of the ending of World War I. We have many countries — the leadership from many countries will be there, especially since they heard the United States will be there. And we look forward to that. It'll be a great, really commemorative service. I think it's going to be something very special. I've seen what they have planned, and I think it's going to be something very, very special.”
And a little bit more from Mr Trump on the potential for him to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin while he is in France:

“I’ll meet with Putin at G20. I don’t know that we’ll each other in Paris, but there may be a lunch for the leaders…I would think. I think we have a good relationship. Having a good relationship with Russia and China and every other country is a good thing, not a bad thing.”
Given that Mr Trump is leaving quite a few issues behind him in Washington DC - his clashes with the media, his pick for acting Attorney General - he tried to talk through them in an impromptu press conference before heading to Paris.

Here is an extended clip:

 
 
Here is our Diplomatic Editor Kim Sengupta on Mr Trump's visit to France.
 

Please allow a moment for our liveblog to load

Associated Press

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