November 16, 2016 / 12:59 PM / 2 years ago

Obama says confident U.S. will continue commitment to NATO

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a speech at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center in Athens, Greece November 16, 2016. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

ATHENS (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Wednesday he was confident the commitment of the United States to NATO would continue, seeking to reassure allies Republican President-elect Donald Trump would maintain core U.S. strategic interests around the world.

“Today, NATO, the world’s greatest alliance, is as strong and as ready as it has ever been. And I am confident that just as America’s commitment to the Translantic Alliance has endured for seven decades - whether it’s been under a Democratic or a Republican administration - that commitment will continue. Including our pledge and our treaty obligation to defend every ally,” Obama said during a speech in Athens.

He is on his final tour of Europe before being succeeded by Trump in January.

“Our democracies show that we are stronger than terrorists, fundamentalists and absolutists, who cannot tolerate difference... who try to change peoples way of life through violence and want to make us to tray or shrink from our values.”

“Democracy is stronger than organizations like ISIS,” he said, referring to Islamic State.

“Because our democracies are inclusive, we are able to welcome people, and refugees in need to our country’s and nowhere have we seen that compassion more evident than here in Greece,” he said after visiting the Acropolis hill in Athens.

Reporting by Jeff Mason, writing by Renee Maltezou

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