Nervous about China, Southeast Asia gets Trump's attention

Nervous about China, Southeast Asia gets Trump's attention

The East Asia Summit groups 18 countries including Asean member states, the US, Russia and China. "But it's sometime in early May", Bolivar said, adding that the meeting is confirmed but the details are still being worked out.

According to Malacañang's chief protocol officer Ambassador Marciano Paynor, Trump made the confirmation during his earlier phone call with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte previous year.

President Duterte will be busy next week since he will be hosting for the first time an global engagement.

"We usually expect 100 percent attendance", Paynor told reporters, when sought for confirmation on Trump's attendance on Asean summit later this year.

After the ASEAN meeting, Duterte and Widodo will fly to Davao to witness the launch of the Davao-Gensan-Bitung Roro route on April 30.

Sultan Bolkiah's visit and bilateral meeting will take place on April 27 while President Widodo's state visit and meeting with Duterte is set on April 28.

Paynor said there had been requests from other Asean leaders to have bilateral discussions with the President but stressed that the latter's schedule is "so tight".

Trump Should Fire 'Moron' Spicer — Howard Stern
But he "mistakenly made an inappropriate and insensitive reference to the Holocaust, for which there is no comparison", he said . But I'm saying in the way Assad used them, where he went into towns, dropped them down to innocent - into the middle of towns.

Asean officials will discuss trade negotiations and hold other related meetings at Hennan Resort on Panglao Island on April 19-22, he said. "But for the most part, these are just pleasantries and, you know, reiteration of cooperation between the two countries and stuff like that", Paynor said.

Ambassador Paynor said the government's preparation for ASEAN Summit 2017 is much shorter than the APEC Summit in 2015.

On April 26, a meeting of Asean Committee of Permanent Representatives will be held.

As this year's chair of ASEAN, the Philippines is host to 137 ASEAN meetings spread out during the entire year.

"At least verbally he (Mr. Trump) said he was coming", ASEAN 2017 Director-General for Operations Marciano A. Paynor, Jr. said in a press briefing at the Palace on Wednesday.

But, ASEAN experts like Ibrahim Almuttaqi of the Jakarta-based Habibie Center remained cautious about the prospect of a more engaged United States government.

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