By JILL COLVIN and MATTHEW PENNINGTON | The Associated Press
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — President Donald Trump will play host to Japan’s Shinzo Abe at Mar-a-Lago this week amid growing strain between the two countries over the president’s planned meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un and his push for new tariffs.
The visit will be an opportunity for the two leaders to discuss Trump’s upcoming summit with North Korea, which Japan eyes warily. It will also serve as a test of whether the fond personal relationship the two leaders have forged on the golf course and over meetings and phone calls has chilled over Trump’s recent moves, including his failure to exempt Japan from new steel and aluminum tariffs.
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“We expect it to be very positive,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Monday of Abe’s visit. “Obviously, the president has got a great relationship there, and it’s going to be centered primarily on preparation for talks with North Korea as well as a lot of trade discussion is expected to come up.”
The official visit will begin Tuesday afternoon with a one-on-one meeting followed by a small group discussion with top national security officials focused on the Kim summit. In the evening, the president and first lady Melania Trump will have dinner with the Japanese prime minister and his wife.
On Wednesday, the topic will broaden to other issues affecting the Indo-Pacific region, including trade and energy. Trump and Abe will also hold a joint press conference before the president and first lady host the Japanese delegations for dinner. Abe will return to Japan on Thursday morning.
Golf is not on the official schedule, …read more
Source:: The Mercury News – Politics