DC Roundup: US-Asia Security Talks, Trump on Terrorism, Putin on US Election

Developments in Washington, D.C., over the weekend U.S.-Asia discussions in Singapore, President Donald Trump says the world needs to stop being “politically correct” in fighting terrorism, protests, for and against the president, demonstrate over the weekend, The New York Times says Trump will not prevent fired FBI Director James Comey from testifying to Congress this week, and former Fox News host Megyn Kelly interviews Russia President Vladimir Putin, who claims American hackers could have framed Russia in 2016 presidential election:

WATCH: Mattis at security forum

Mattis Offers Assurances of US ‘Enduring Commitment’ to Asia — U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis used a top regional security forum in Singapore this weekend to try and reassure Asia that the United States is not backing away from its enduring commitment to the region. How convinced Washington’s allies and partners in the region will be, remains to be seen, analysts say.

Mattis Says China’s Militarization of Man-Made Islands Unacceptable — Mattis applauded China’s efforts to work with the international community on North Korea at an annual security forum in Singapore Saturday. But when it came to the South China Sea, he called China’s ongoing militarization of man-made islands there and its disregard for international order, unacceptable.

Tillerson to Tackle Regional Challenges on First Trip to South Pacific — The United States is enlisting its Oceania allies to tackle growing threats from North Korea and counter increasing Chinese influence in the Asia-Pacific region, U.S. officials and experts say. U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary James Mattis are departing for Australia for annual ministerial consultations on June 5, aimed at deepening cooperation on “bilateral, regional and global” issues.

US Security Policy in Spotlight at Annual Asia Defense Summit — Questions about the U.S. commitment to the Asian region will be a key focus as Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis attends the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore this weekend. The annual meeting has typically been an opportunity for countries in the region to voice frustrations and concerns about China. This year, however, Washington may be getting most of the attention, analysts said, after Trump’s announcement this week that the U.S. would exit the Paris climate change agreement.

Trump: World Needs to Stop Being ‘Politically Correct’ in Fighting Terrorism — Trump says the world needs to stop being “politically correct” in fighting terrorism and used the deadly London attack to renew his call for courts to authorize his ban on travel to the U.S. from six majority-Muslim countries. In a string of Twitter comments, the U.S. leader vowed support for Britain, criticized London’s mayor and took a tough stance on fighting terrorism.

‘Free Speech,’ ‘No Nazi’ Counter Rallies Fill Downtown Portland — One week after two men were killed defending two women from anti-Muslim slurs on public transit in Portland, Oregon, a “free speech” rally and counter protests filled the city center. Four separate rallies including two titled “Trump Free Speech” and “No Nazis on Our Streets” took place Sunday, all in the city’s center.

WATCH: Protesters support Trump

Anti-Trump Protesters Gather Across US, Abroad — Protests were underway Saturday in more than 135 cities in the U.S. and around the world to demand an impartial investigation into any potential collusion between President Donald Trump’s campaign and Russia to influence last year’s election in Trump’s favor. The “March for Truth” protests were organized by a national coalition of 17 activist groups, including the Women’s March and the Progressive Democrats of America.

WATCH: Protesters against Trump

NY Times: Trump Not Planning to Invoke Executive Privilege for Comey Testimony — Trump reportedly does not plan to invoke executive privilege in an attempt to prevent former FBI Director James Comey from disclosing potentially harmful information to Congress about statements Trump made about his embattled former national security director. The decision was reported by The New York Times, which attributed information about the decision to unnamed senior officials with the Trump administration.

WATCH: PM May: Enough is enough

Islamic State Claims London Terror Rampage — Islamic State (IS) is claiming responsibility for Saturday night’s deadly terror rampage in London, which killed seven people and wounded 48. IS made its claim of a “security detachment” carrying out the attack on its Amaaq news agency webpage. A van driver ran over pedestrians on the London Bridge. Three men jumped out of the van and stabbed people in a nearby market.

Bloomberg Leads Effort to Help US Stick to Paris Deal — Michael Bloomberg is on a mission to ensure the U.S., one of the world’s top polluters, upholds its commitments to the Paris climate pact, even if it is not formally a part of it. Trump recently announced the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris agreement on climate change, saying the deal was too costly and would cause U.S. businesses to lose 7 million jobs by 2025.

Pence Praises Trump as ‘More Concerned with Des Moines Than Denmark’ — U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said Saturday that it’s “great to have a president who is more concerned with Des Moines than Denmark,” after rolling up to a political fundraiser on a motorcycle. Pence was in Iowa Saturday at a fundraiser for Senator Joni Ernst dubbed “Roast and Ride,” a barbecue to honor U.S. veterans.

WATCH: Many businesses critical of Trump climate action

US Cities, States, Businesses Back Climate Change Agreement — Trump said he represented “the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris” when he announced the U.S. withdrawal from the historic climate agreement signed in the French capital. But Bill Peduto, the mayor of Pittsburgh, said he was “personally offended” by Trump’s remarks. Peduto said Trump’s speechwriter used Pittsburgh as a stereotype of a “dirty old town that relies on big coal and big steel to survive.” He said Trump’s reference “completely ignores the sacrifices that we made over 30 years … to clean our air and clean our water.”

Putin: US Could Have Hacked Election, Blamed Russia — American hackers could have planted false evidence that Russia interfered in the U.S. presidential election, President Vladimir Putin was quoted as saying by NBC News Saturday. U.S. intelligence officials have said Russia tried to interfere in the U.S. election by hacking the Democratic Party to sway the vote in favor of Trump, a charge the Kremlin has repeatedly denied.

German Right-wingers Urge Switch of Climate Change Policy — A conservative group in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party is urging a change of approach to climate change, arguing that the melting of sea ice could carry more opportunities than problems. Lawmaker Philipp Lengsfeld wrote on Twitter Sunday that the Berlin Circle group wants “massive course corrections in climate and energy policy.” Lengsfeld said its statement was originally published Tuesday — before President Donald Trump announced the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, which Merkel criticized.

Trump ‘Believes Climate Is Changing,’ Haley Tells CNN — Trump “believes the climate is changing,” U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley says. “President Trump believes the climate is changing and he believes pollutants are part of the equation,” Haley said during an excerpt of a CNN interview released Saturday. The interview will be broadcast Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union.

Facts Muddy Trump’s Claim That US is Cleanest Country — Trump said the United States “will continue to be the cleanest and most environmentally friendly country on Earth” as he announced a U.S. pullout from an international accord designed to curb climate change. But facts muddy that claim. Data show that the U.S. is among the dirtiest countries when it comes to heat-trapping carbon pollution. One nation that has cleaner air in nearly every way is Sweden.

White House Looks at Sanctions on Venezuela’s Oil Sector — The Trump administration is considering possible sanctions on Venezuela’s vital energy sector, including state oil company PDVSA, senior White House officials said, in what would be a major escalation of U.S. efforts to pressure the country’s embattled leftist government amid a crackdown on the opposition.

Perry Staying Busy, Gaining in Enthusiasm at Energy Department — Rick Perry twice ran for president and appeared as a contestant on TV’s Dancing with the Stars. But since becoming Trump’s energy secretary, Perry has kept a low profile and rarely has been seen publicly around Washington. He has toured Energy Department sites around the country, represented the Trump administration at a meeting in Italy and pledged to investigate a tunnel collapse at a radioactive waste storage site in Washington state.

WATCH: Silicon Valley Debates Future of H1B Employment-Based Visa

дата публікації: 05-06-2017

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