The two powerful leaders first met in May when they shared a clenched-jaw greeting and pictures today suggest tensions could still remain between the pair
Donald Trump was greeted warmly by the French President Emmanuel Macron in front of the cameras as the pair met in Paris today.
The two powerful leaders shook hands and patted each other on the back – a contrast to the clenched-jaw greeting they shared at their first meeting in May.
But after greeting each other in front of the cameras, the pair were pictured in a seemingly intense looking conversation which appeared to tell a different story.
As they toured the grand 17th century Hotel des Invalides, where Napoleon Bonaparte and other French war heroes are buried, France’s newly-elected President has his arms crossed as Trump gesticulated wildly at him.
At one point, Trump has his arms thrown to the side as Macron looks unimpressed – just minutes after he patted the American leader on the back several times, before breaking out into a smile.
In the snaps, rigid body language suggests the pair are sharing an uncomfortable moment – much like their first encounter.
The awkward meeting saw each grip the other’s hand so firmly that their knuckles turned white.
Macron and Trump were scheduled to hold talks lasting an hour and a half before dining with their wives at a restaurant on the second floor of the Eiffel Tower.
After a bumpy start, both have incentives to improve relations – Macron hoping to elevate France’s role in global affairs, and Trump, seemingly isolated among world leaders, needing a friend overseas.
“Emmanuel, nice to see you. This is so beautiful,” the US president told Macron as they met at the Hotel des Invalides where Napoleon Bonaparte and other French war heroes are buried.
Trump arrived in France beset by allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 US election, with emails released on Tuesday suggesting his eldest son welcomed an offer of Russian help against his dad’s Democratic rival Hillary Clinton .
Trump is on a 24-hour visit to the French capital, where Macron will woo him by escorting him to Napoleon’s tomb, taking him to dinner at the Eiffel Tower, then watching the Bastille Day military parade on the Champs Elysées.
Trump was pictured firmly holding Brigitte Macron’s hand as he and Melania Trump arrived to greet the Macrons at the historic site.
For the 39-year-old Macron, France’s youngest leader since Napoleon two centuries ago, the visit is a chance to use soft diplomacy to win Trump’s confidence and set about influencing U.S. foreign policy, which European leaders say lacks direction.
Macron views it as counter-productive to isolate the United States on the world stage, and progress may be made on joint approaches to counter-terrorism and security.