Trump to skip 'Summit of the Americas' to deal with Syria

Trump to skip 'Summit of the Americas' to deal with Syria

Trump to skip 'Summit of the Americas' to deal with Syria

The earlier US announcement that President Donald Trump will not attend the 8th Summit of the Americas to be held this week here in the Peruvian capital reflects a "low priority" for Latin America on Washington's agenda, said Peruvian analysts.

Trump was scheduled to attend the April 13-14 Summit of the Americas in Lima, Peru, and travel to Bogota, Colombia, but he has requested Vice President Mike Pence to attend in his place, spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said.

"I'm not very surprised (with Trump's absence) because the USA government really has no clear agenda for the region", he said.

The decision marks the first time a USA president has not attended the summit. He will also "oversee the American response to Syria" in the time that he had previously allocated to his first official visit to Latin America (seriously, it's taken him this long to get that together - and it's not even going forward anymore).

Speaking to reporters at the White House, he said: "We're making decisions as to what we do with respect to the terrible attack that was made near Damascus".

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"We must not overlook Russian Federation and Iran's roles in enabling the Assad regime's murderous destruction", Haley said.

Trump was supposed to travel to Bogot√° following the summit visit in order to speak with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos about matters of the drug trade and an increasingly hard transition with the peace deal. He can work on his relationship with South America later, when he can stomach meeting its leaders. It's also a missed opportunity for Trump to build bridges in the region; he's widely unpopular with Latin Americans thanks, in part, to his statements on immigration. It will be interesting to see how Vice President Pence manages the situation at the summit, and how the other countries react to him.

The White House announced on Tuesday that Donald Trump will not travel to South America this week as planned.

Many Latin American leaders had hoped to have their first face-to-face encounter with the US President.

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