President Trump arrived in Tokyo, the first stop on his 13 -day tour of Asia, early Sunday and rallied U.S. troops who awaited his arrival.
The president arrived at Yokota Air Base around 10:30 am local time and shook hands and signed autographs as he made his way to a hanger where he addressed troops stationed at the U.S. military outpost.
He walked out to the pulpit before the crowd of hundreds as “Hail to the Chief” was played by a military brass band. The crowd of service members chanted “USA! USA! USA! ” as he approached the rostrum. He was then given a leather bomber jacket.
“Should I put it on? ” he asked the crowd before trying it on for size.
“I like this, ” he said. “You can keep my other jacket.”
“I’m honored to be here in this country, ” Trump said. “They are a great ally.”
“Americans have deep respect and admiration for the people of Japan.”
“Like those who came before you, you have risen to the occasion and never let anyone down.”
The president thanked those in attendance before touting recent accomplishments.
“The stock market is an all-time high, ” he said. “Unemployment is at an all-time low.”
“This has all happened since a very special day known as Election Day.”
He also mentioned that ISIS has been crippled.
“We’ve dealt ISIS blow after blow, ” he said.
According to administration officials, the president’s trip is likely to be the longest journey to Asia by a president since 1991, when President George H.W. Bush was in office.
The president’s trip comes amid the first charges in special attorney Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling and potential collusion with Trump campaign associates during the 2016 presidential election.
Ahead of the trip-up, the president said it was possible he could see Russian President Vladmir Putin while in Asia.
“We may have a meeting with Putin, ” the president said on Fox News’ The Ingraham Angle on Thursday. “And, again- Putin is very important because they can help us with North Korea. They can help us with Syria. We have to talk about Ukraine.”
The president is slated to first meet with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. As they did at Mar–ALago, Trump and Abe will play a round of golf at a country club in Japan–this time, joined by the world’s No. 4 golfer, Hideki Matsuyama.
Trump’s visit in Japan, according to the White House, will include sessions with service members and bilateral meetings.
The president is also expected to meet with families of Japanese citizens abducted by Kim Jong Un’s rogue regime.
Trump and Abe spoke earlier the coming week, and the president said they “affirmed the important of promoting a free and open Indo-Pacific region, ” and “maintaining close coordination” between the United States and Japan, and with countries around the world “to maximize pressure on North Korea.”
The president’s next stop is likely to be South Korea, where he will have a bilateral meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in. Trump will meet with service members, and also is slated for a speech at the National Assembly in Seoul.
A senior administration official told reporters during a White House background briefing this week that there was not enough time in the president’s schedule to accommodate a trip to the Demilitarized zone, which has separated North Korea and South Korea for 64 years.
Instead of the DMZ, Trump will visit military base Camp Humphreys, which is set 40 miles south of Seoul, to highlight the U.S.-South Korean partnership.
Trump’s next stop is Vietnam, where he will take part in Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation( APEC) events, according to the White House.
Trump will go to the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi for an official visit and bilateral involvements with President Tran Dai Quang and other senior Vietnamese leaders.
The final stop for Trump is the Philippines. The chairwoman was merely slated to be in the Philippines for the working day, but on Friday announced an additional day.
Trump is set for a bilateral meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte, who has been accused of human rights abuses, including killing suspected drug dealers. The White House has said that Trump could raise concerns with the program, though Duterte and Trump shared a “warm rapport” during a phone conversation.
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