President Trump and Australia PM have 'worst call'
- Author: Rita Burton Feb 03, 2017,
Feb 03, 2017, 0:51
President Donald Trump blasted a "dumb deal" for the United States to take in hundreds of Australian asylum seekers following a fraught phone call with Australia's prime minister.
The Post reported on Thursday that Trump had fumed during the phone call, and told the Australian prime minister he'd spoken to other world leaders on the same day, and this was "this was the worst call by far". Technically, asylum seekers are not illegal immigrants, and technically, Australia has refused to house the refugees, which is why they are in Papa New Guinea in the first place.
Turnbull also said he's disappointed that details about his communication with Trump were leaked. I always stand up for Australia in every forum, public or private.
He also boasted to Mr Turnbull about the size of his election victory, according to reports.
But later Wednesday night, Trump published a tweet suggesting that he will review the deal before committing to it. Trump tweeted. "The Obama Administration agreed to take thousands of illegal immigrants from Australia. Why?"
But what would have particularly stung for the Australian leader was Trump slamming a refugee resettlement deal that Canberra thought was confirmed as "dumb" and needing further study. If they did not pass the US screening process, then the refugees would not be let into the country. The Washington Post story shot to the top of the nation's trending topics on Twitter, and was plastered across the top of Australia's major news sites. He said their conversation ended "courteously".More news: Mexico's president cancels meeting with President Trump after border wall executive order
"If I was Prime Minister, I would want the United States to be our ally, and I'm sure that the Americans want Australia to be their ally, but if I was Prime Minister I would never just be a satellite of the United States, and it is important that Australia speaks its mind".
Late Wednesday, a Mexico presidential spokesman denied Trump told President Enrique Pena Nieto over the phone he might send US troops into Mexico, and said there was no threatening tone on the call.
On Wednesday, US presidential spokesman Sean Spicer also said Mr Trump meant to uphold the deal.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters that the refugees would undergo enhanced screening created to reduce the terrorist threat to the United States.
On Thursday the State Department issued a separate statement saying that the deal was going ahead.
"The official White House statement read, "[the two] emphasized the enduring strength and closeness of the U.S. -Australia relationship that is critical for peace, stability, and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region and globally".