Four German states have appealed to members of the U.S. Congress to block plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Germany.
The appeal was contained in a letter signed by the prime ministers of the four southern states.
The ministers addressed the letters to 13 members of Congress including senators Mitt Romney and Jim Inhofe.
This followed President Donald Trump’s announcement last month that he would cut the number of U.S. troops in Germany.
Trump faulted the fellow NATO member for failing to meet the North Atlantic alliance’s defence spending target and accusing it of taking advantage of America on trade.
“We therefore ask you to support us as we strive not to sever the bond of friendship but to strengthen it, and to secure the U.S. presence in Germany and Europe in the future,” wrote the premiers of Bavaria, Hesse, Baden-Wuerttemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate
Last month, Washington stated that the move would “enhance Russian deterrence, strengthen NATO, reassure Allies”.
The premiers acknowledged in their letters that the U.S. forces in their states “form the backbone of the U.S. presence in Europe and NATO’s ability to act”.