Published: Tue, April 17, 2018

In Peru, Pence updates allies on US-led airstrikes in Syria

In Peru, Pence updates allies on US-led airstrikes in Syria

Therefore he would return into his lodge to inform leaders of their missile strikes ahead of Trump's speech to the nation Friday evening, Pence was whisked far from the summit into his own motorcade.

The vice president on Saturday praised Chile as a strong USA ally as the two leaders met along the sidelines of the Summit of the Americas in Lima, Peru.

Agen says Pence was unable to reach Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer before the speech but planned to speak to him afterward.

He learned only Tuesday that he would be attending in Trump's place so the president could manage the US response to Syria.

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise issued a statement supporting the president's decision to carry out the strikes alongside the United Kingdom and France. Pence, meanwhile, has been contested within his exchanges and often siphoned down at indicator cards because he spoke to LatinAmerican leaders.

This year's summit is one of the least attended in recent memory, raising questions about the future of the regional gathering started in 1994 by former President Bill Clinton to assert American trade influence in the region. The vice president called Maduro's government a "dictatorship" and said the USA would continue to push a hard line against the country's leadership.

"We want one message to be clear: We are with the people of Venezuela", Pence said at the USA ambassador's residence, seated with a group of Venezuelan opposition leaders.

The Trump administration has rolled back many of Obama's overtures to open travel and commerce with the island and withdrawn most of its diplomats in Cuba over mysterious "sonic attacks" in Havana. After that, Vizcarra met with the president of Haiti, Jovenel Moise.

Pence urged Maduro to accept humanitarian aid as the once-prosperous nation deals with humanitarian and economic crises.

Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra opened a subdued Summit of the Americas decrying widespread corruption and urging regional leaders to join forces in increasing transparency and boosting civil society.

The vice president announced that the U.S. would provide almost $16 million in humanitarian assistance to Venezuelans who have fled their country under the rule of President Nicolas Maduro.

Pence is also expected to meet with the leaders of Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Peru. But a coterie of leftists, including Brazil's Lula da Silva, Argentina's Néstor Kirchner, and Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, with the support of soccer legend Diego Armando Maradona, buried the idea, arguing that free-trade agreements were an imperialist US weapon.

Pence's meeting with Pena Nieto will follow Trump's calls to send National Guard troops to the border.

But U.S. and Chinese trade will loom large over talks as a heated dispute between the world's two biggest economies continues to fan fears of a trade war.

"It's not surprising. It shows the priority President Trump gives to Latin America", a Brazilian government source who asked not to be named said.

Vice President Mike Pence has told Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that the "encouraged" by the progress on negotiations on the North American Free Trade Agreement and hopeful it can lead to "more fair and reciprocal trade".

Vice President Mike Pence plans to promote the a steady trading partner and press Latin American partners to further isolate Venezuela during his weekend trip to Peru.

"It appears that in most of these situations, there are specific and unique reasons for heads of state not to attend", said Matt Clausen, who is in Lima as head of the Washington Office on Latin America. Trump has assailed the commerce deal's impact on US employees and threatened to pull on the USA out when he's unhappy with all the terms.

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