by Itunuoluwa Adebo
President Trump leaves May 19, for his first trip abroad as President in a bid to boost his foreign policy agenda.
First Lady Melania will accompany him on the eight-day, five-country trip, featuring stops at three of the World’s holiest sites. Trump would be attempting to rebuild relations with countries like Israel and Saudi Arabia, which were strained under former Barack Obama., Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State will also accompany Trump for most of the trip.
At the U.S. Coast Guard Academy on Wednesday, Pres. Trump outlined his hopes for the trip, “I will strengthen old friendships and seek new partners, but partners who also help us, not partners who take, and take, and take,” Trump said in his commencement address. “Partners who help pay for whatever we are doing and all of the good that we doing for them. Which is something that a lot of people have not gotten used to, and they just can’t get used to it.”
He tweeted his excitement, Friday “Getting ready for my big foreign trip.Will be strongly protecting American interests, that’s what I like to do!”
Getting ready for my big foreign trip. Will be strongly protecting American interests – that's what I like to do!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2017
Trump arrives in Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam, on May 20. He will first meet King Salman in Riyadh for coffee, followed by a royal banquet, before holding bilateral talks with the King, the Crown Prince and Deputy Crown Prince. Trump will reportedly come bearing a $100 billion arms deal, and the leaders are likely to discuss issues such as Syria, Iran and the ongoing war in Yemen. He will hold bilateral meetings with the Gulf Cooperation Council, which consists of six energy rich Middle Eastern countries, Trump will also have lunch with leaders from more than 50 Muslim countries— including Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.
According to McMaster, Trump will finish-off his trip by inaugurating a new center to fight radicalism and will participate in a Twitter forum with young people.
On May 22, he arrives in Israel amid diplomatic misunderstandings, which includes Trump leaking classified information to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that is said to have come from Israel, and McMaster saying the Western Wall is not a part of Israel.
Trump will meet with Israeli President in Jerusalem and lay a wreath at the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, Yad Vashem. After that, he will deliver remarks at the Israel Museum and reaffirm the U.S.’s “unshakable bond with the closest ally in the Middle East” after which Trump will meet privately with Prime Minister Netanyahu and have dinner with Netanyahu and wife.
Trump will meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Bethlehem the next day, part of his effort to the end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In Jerusalem, he will say a prayer at the Western Wall, becoming the first sitting U.S. President to visit the contested territory. He will also visit the Church of the Holy Sepulcher.
On May 24, Trump will meet Pope Francis at the Vatican. According to ABC News, Speaking ahead of the visit on May 13, Pope Francis said “I will tell him what I think, he will tell me what he thinks, but I never wanted to judge someone before I listen to the person first,” the Pope said. Trump will also get a tour of St. Peter’s by the Cardinal Secretary of State and meet Italy’s President Sergio Mattarella before he leaves Rome.
On May 25, Trump will meet Belgium’s King Philippe and Prime Minister Charles Michel, as well as heads of state and government of the country. He will go on to the E.U. headquarters in Brussels to meet the E.U. and European Council presidents. Trump has said that the U.K. did the right thing by Brexit and that other countries would follow.
Trump will then have lunch with French President Emmanuel Macron. After which he is expected to reaffirm his commitment to NATO while unveiling the security bloc’s memorial, in front of a piece of the Berlin Wall and segment of the World Trade Center.
On May 26-27, Trump will head to Italy for a G7 meeting on the island of Sicily. Attendees are German President Angela Merkel, Macron, U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the leaders of Italy and Japan— who are keen to gain a clear understanding of Trump’s views on a range of issues, which include trade, terrorism and the refugee crisis.T Trump will attend a concert by the La Scala Philharmonic Orchestra and attend a leaders’ dinner.
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