At NATO Summit Macron Dodges Trump And Hugs Merkel Instead

But a French official quoted Trump as telling the victor, President Emmanuel Macron, that he was "my guy" in the election, when the two met Thursday.

French President Emmanuel Macron has said his recent handshake with US President Donald Trump was a "moment of truth" to show he doesn't even make small concessions.

Quoted in the Sunday newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche, Macron said, "my handshake with him, it wasn't innocent", the Associated Press reported Sunday.

Emmanuel Macron, French President has hinted that he was ready for the extended handshake he had with Donald Trump before the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Italy.

The enthusiastic French premier later grouped Trump with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Russian President Vladimir Putin as leaders who focus on power. At one point, the president tried to pull his hand away, but Mr. Macron grabbed his hand even harder and kept pressing it. But the presidents body language and that of those around him has spoken volumes.

Of course it's not Trump whom Macron and France needs to worry about.

The ambassador, whose previous post was as France's ambassador to the United Nations, allowed that he had just sent a memo to Macron advising him on how to handle the American president during their first meeting at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels on Thursday.

A second poll also confirmed that pattern, with Harris Interactive/LCP forecasting that Macron's party would get 31 percent of votes in the first round of the June vote, with the FN second on 19 percent and the Republicans on 18 percent.

Macron's comments seem to confirm suspicions raised by social media users, media and body experts alike: that the exchange was more of a battle of the wills than a friendly handshake.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe rolled his eyes theatrically in response to a similar treatment. And it happened after Gérard Araud hosted a salon dinner Monday at the spectacular Washington, D.C., home he lives in as the French ambassador to the United States.

But other world leaders have held their own, perhaps most notably Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

  • Audrey Hill