April 21, 2018

Trump Cancels his Participation at 8th Summit of the Americas

11 April 2018, 11:16 | Marta Robbins

Trump Cancels Trip to Latin America to Focus on Response to Syria - White House

Donald Trump cancels first trip to Latin America 'to deal with Syria crisis'

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.

The U.S. will still be represented at the Summit of the Americas, but Vice President Pence will be there, not Trump.

Sanders said Trump has chose to stay in the United States to "oversee the American response to Syria and to monitor developments around the world". Syria and Russian Federation have denied there was a chemical weapons attack and have proposed global inspections.

The 12-nation working group has confronted Maduro's regime by demanding that it free political prisoners and criticizing the weakening of democracy in the South American nation. We continue to be seen as its backyard. The last summit, which took place in 2015 in Panama City, was the notable exception, as it was the setting when presidents Barack Obama and Raul Castro met for the first time. 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 was not yet clear what decision Trump will make in response to the latest attack.

Since Trump took power in January 2017, Vidarte said, "the topic that has dominated ties with Latin America has been the search for measures that will benefit his country more". "The hemisphere is facing serious challenges, including the crisis in Venezuela, and the US void will be deeply felt", he said.

"He looks forward to promoting policy that will lead to an even stronger USA economy and working with our close allies in Latin America to collectively hold undemocratic actors in the region accountable for their actions", said Jarrod Agen, Pence's deputy chief of staff and communications director. Trump will be the first USA president not to attend the Summit since it began in 1994.

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"You have the awkwardness out of the picture", said a Peruvian diplomat who asked not to be named, citing Trump's unpopularity across Latin America. "On the other hand, it is not surprising that a president like Trump is not in a summit in which corruption is the issue because since the beginning he has showed no interest in the issue".

Jarrod Agen, a spokesman for Pence, said the vice president would work with regional allies to increase pressure on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ahead of the country's election next month, which has been dismissed by the opposition and regional leaders as a sham. "Pence is a more disciplined and serious figure", Feierstein said.

Hours before the White House announcement, Mr. Macri had reiterated his deep concerns about the situation in Venezuela, where Mr.

Argentine President Mauricio Macri also said Venezuela would top the agenda in Peru.

Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra told a press conference in Lima that he regretted that Trump was not coming, saying his presence would have been "important".

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