The Latest: Macron unapologetic for NATO “brain death” quip

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, left, and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, right, welcome U.S. President Donald Trump during a NATO lead...
'The sun rises as NATO leaders arrive for a meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. As NATO...
Security forces are positioned on the roof of the Grove hotel and resort where NATO leaders are meeting in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday,...
Leaders of the NATO alliance countries, and its secretary general, join Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles the Prince of Wales, for a gro...
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gives a statement prior to the arrival of NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertf...
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson arrives for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, D...
President Donald Trump listens as French President Emmanuel Macron speaks during a meeting at Winfield House during the NATO summit, Tuesday, Dec. 3, ...
Luxembourg's Prime Minister Xavier Bettel arrives for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesd...
Photographers record the arrival of a motorcade at The Grove hotel where Nato leaders are attending their annual summit, in Watford, England, Wednesda...
A supporter of President Donald Trump waves the U.S. flag outside Buckingham Palace in London, Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019. Trump and his NATO counterparts ...
U.S. President Donald Trump leaves 10 Downing Street in London after attending a NATO reception hosted by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Tuesda...
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday,...
A convoy is arriving for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. As NATO lea...

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, left, and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, right, welcome U.S. President Donald Trump during a NATO lead...

'The sun rises as NATO leaders arrive for a meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. As NATO...

Security forces are positioned on the roof of the Grove hotel and resort where NATO leaders are meeting in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday,...

Leaders of the NATO alliance countries, and its secretary general, join Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles the Prince of Wales, for a gro...

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gives a statement prior to the arrival of NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertf...

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson arrives for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, D...

President Donald Trump listens as French President Emmanuel Macron speaks during a meeting at Winfield House during the NATO summit, Tuesday, Dec. 3, ...

Luxembourg's Prime Minister Xavier Bettel arrives for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesd...

Photographers record the arrival of a motorcade at The Grove hotel where Nato leaders are attending their annual summit, in Watford, England, Wednesda...

A supporter of President Donald Trump waves the U.S. flag outside Buckingham Palace in London, Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019. Trump and his NATO counterparts ...

U.S. President Donald Trump leaves 10 Downing Street in London after attending a NATO reception hosted by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Tuesda...

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday,...

A convoy is arriving for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. As NATO lea...

LONDON (AP) — The Latest on the NATO summit in London (all times local):

10:05 a.m.

French President Emmanuel Macron is refusing to apologize for saying that NATO is suffering “brain death” and says his remarks could help jumpstart talks at the alliance about important strategic issues.

Arriving Wednesday at a NATO summit near London, Macron said his interview with the Economist magazine, which alarmed some allies, has “allowed us to raise fundamental debates.”

Chief among them, Macron says, is “how to build sustainable peace in Europe.”

He says NATO “debates should be about other things than budgets and finances.”

Macron says leaders’ “responsibility is to highlight ambiguities that could be damaging and to launch a real strategic debate.”

In the interview last month, Macron said NATO was suffering due to a lack of U.S. leadership and through ally Turkey’s invasion of northern Syria. U.S. President Donald Trump described the remarks as “very, very nasty.”

___

9:45 a.m.

NATO leaders on Wednesday played down their differences and insisted that they remain united over security issues and determined to defend each other despite a series of spats between the presidents of some of the alliance’s biggest member countries.

Ahead of a summit near London, French President Emmanuel Macron had lamented the “brain death” of NATO due in part to what he called a lack of U.S. leadership. President Donald Trump branded his remarks as “very disrespectful.” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan suggested that Macron himself is “brain dead.”

The infighting is mostly due to Turkey’s invasion of northern Syria. Macron has complained that Trump pulled U.S. troops out of the region without warning his NATO allies. Turkey saw the move as a greenlight to send its troops in.

“NATO is agile, NATO is active, NATO is adapting,” NATO-Secretary Jens Stoltenberg said when asked by reporters whether the world’s biggest security alliance is brain dead.

“As long as we are able to deliver substance... then NATO proves once again that we are able to respond to a shifting security landscape, and that’s the best way to also provide unity of this alliance,” he said before chairing the summit at a luxury hotel and golf resort on the outskirts of London.