Culture&Arts

Three things to watch on Donald Trump's foreign trip

Three things to watch on Donald Trump's foreign trip

President Donald Trump leaves today for a nine-day, five-city foreign excursion, his first trip outside of the United States as the country's leader and top diplomat.

CORNISH: In a wide range of events here, we mentioned Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Vatican - right? - three major religious centers. Melania Trump is accompanying her husband on the trip.

On Thursday, the president will take part in a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Belgium and then pay a visit to what was, during his election campaign, the "evil empire": the European Union headquarters in Brussels, and a meeting with the heads of the EU and the European Council.

It goes without saying that it's a fraught agenda for any leader, but especially one with Mr Trump's signature bluntness on the issue of radical Islamic terrorism and penchant for going off script.

He will perform for a men-only audience Saturday in Riyadh.

The Stars and Stripes is flying in Riyadh's streets, intermixed with Saudi flags. The summit will bring together more than 50 leaders from Muslim and Arab countries. This has been revealed by the foreign minister of Saudi Arabia, Adel al-Jubeir.

The wife of President, Melania Trump, is going to make her first overseas trip as the First Lady of the United States (FLOTUS).




Trump will also meet the new French President Emmanuel Macron. "And we expect that we will have six prime ministers and this is an unprecedented level of participation". The U.S. president, a prolific - and often contentious - user of Twitter, will also deliver the keynote address at a conference about social media, under the auspices of Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the king's powerful son.

And American country singer Toby Keith is expected to join Trump and perform for him there. Alcohol is banned and unrelated men and women are segregated in public.

"Historic Summit. Brighter Future", declares an official website for the visit.

The Saudis, meanwhile, felt they were downgraded under President Obama, who reached out to their main rival, Iran. The reason given was their affiliation with Israeli media outlets, although both reporters are said to be U.S. citizens.

"The Trump administration is very cognizant of the dangers Iran represent to the region", he said, and will work "to contain Iran".

In a break with tradition, the President will head to Saudi Arabia, Israel, the Vatican and then Belgium and Italy for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and G7 meetings on his first trip overseas.

But several of Trump's top advisers want to tilt US policy in the Arab world back toward Sunni power, led by the Saudis, as a counterweight to Shiite Iran.


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