U.S. Army and German Soldiers advance online during an objective assault training mission at the Vaziani Training Area, Georgia on Aug. 1, 2018. Noble Partner 18 incorporates Soldiers and militaries from 13 countries and provides allied and partner countries ready and postured forces while contributing to a stable and secure environment in the Black Sea region. U.S. Army National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. R.J. Lannom Jr

US President Donald Trump has approved a plan to withdraw 9,500 American troops from bases in Germany by September, US media say.

Mr Trump, who has long complained that European members of Nato should spend more on their own defence, reportedly wants US troop levels capped at 25,000.

Troops would either be redeployed elsewhere or return home, US media report, citing a government official.

Tensions between the US and its Nato allies have increased under Mr Trump.

The president has said that Europe’s North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (Nato) members should no longer be relying so heavily on the US to shoulder the costs of maintaining the alliance.

The German foreign ministry has not commented, but two senior members of the ruling Christian Democratic Union party expressed concern at the news.

MP Andreas Nick said the fact that the Pentagon had made no public comment, instead directing inquiries to the White House, indicated “that the decision is purely politically motivated”.

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