Trump, Putin shake hands at Asia Pacific meeting in Vietnam

Trump, Putin shake hands at Asia Pacific meeting in Vietnam

President Rodrigo Duterte and Russian President Vladimir Putin meet on the sidelines of the APEC summit in Da Nang, Vietnam, Friday.

The president, who campaigned on shredding multilateral trade agreements he has deemed unfair, insisted during his travels that multibillion-dollar deficits that favor USA trading partners will be reduced to zero, and that trade overall must be fair and mutually beneficial.

He pushed a go-it-alone trade policy yet reaffirmed traditional strategic alliances. "Tremendous amounts of work was done on trade".

President Trump was left confused by a communal handshake that took place between some of the world's most powerful leaders during the opening ceremony of the 31st Association of South East Asian Nations in November.

Trump also teased a "major statement" on trade and the trip later this week at the White House, where he is expected to promote congressional Republicans' plan to overhaul the nation's tax code.

Perhaps Trump was referring erroneously to Obama's aborted meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte?

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Asked about the war on drugs, the official said "our side is going to be talking about the drug war and ways in which that war could be prosecuted that conform with Philippine law and worldwide norms for human rights".

Duterte took steps to thaw frosty relations with China after he won the presidency a year ago. Instead, Trump said he and Duterte "had a great relationship", and avoided questions about whether he raised human rights concerns in a meeting with the Philippine leader.

Karapatan secretary-general Cristina Palabay said it was hypocritical for the two to even discuss the topic given their tracklist of human rights violations. "I intend to continue buying these weapons in the future", Duterte said.

Her readout appeared to conflict with the Filipino version of the meeting.

The meeting was "short but was warm and cordial", Duterte's spokesman, Harry Roque, told reporters. There was no mention of extralegal killings.

"Foreign leaders should recognize that the fist. symbolizes a purposeful attack by Duterte on rule of law that has inflicted a human rights calamity on thousands of Filipinos", Kine said.

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Since Duterte took office 16 months ago, police say they have killed 3,967 people in the crackdown on illegal drugs. "How much more now that I am president?"

Trump has pulled the United States out of the Pacific Rim trade pact known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Trump will also meet with Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, which plays a key role in the USA vision of an Indo-Pacific region that attempts to de-emphasize China's influence.

He jointly met with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, with whom he had a contentious phone call last winter, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who hosted the president in Tokyo earlier in the trip.

"And he will come through loud and clear", the official said, adding the USA president "will be talking specifically about the importance of navigation and expressing concern about the militarization of features in the South China Sea".

Duterte and Trump, who has adopted a similar strategy to excuse outrageous remarks spoken in earnest as jokes after the fact, could perhaps compare notes in Manila this weekend.

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"We've made some very big steps with regard to trade - far bigger than anything you know", Trump told reporters at the beginning of the meeting in Manila, touting business deals forged between USA and foreign companies.

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