May 28, 2017 10:08 am

Emmanuel Macron says Donald Trump handshake ‘wasn’t innocent’

WATCH ABOVE: 'Death grip' handshake shared by Trump and France's Macron comes under scrutiny

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French President Emmanuel Macron says his now famous white-knuckle handshake showdown with U.S. counterpart Donald Trump was “a moment of truth” – designed to show that he’s no pushover.

Macron told a Sunday newspaper in France that “my handshake with him, it wasn’t innocent.”

Macron added: “One must show that you won’t make small concessions, even symbolic ones, but also not over-publicize things, either.”

READ MORE: France’s Macron bested Trump in awkward handshake battle, Twitter users say

Macron’s office confirmed to The Associated Press the veracity of the president’s comments in Le Journal du Dimanche.

At their first meeting, ahead of a NATO summit in Brussels on Thursday, the two men locked hands for so long that knuckles started turning white. The French leader held the shake for a few seconds more. Both men’s jaws seemed to clench.

© 2017 The Canadian Press

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