Abbas, foreign leaders respond to Trump taking office

Abbas: "I look forward to working with him for the sake of peace, security and stability in a world that is troubled."

January 22, 2017 10:42
2 minute read.
Donald Trump (L) and Mahmoud Abbas (R)

Donald Trump (L) and Mahmoud Abbas (R). (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Donald Trump's inauguration as US president on Friday was greeted with notes of caution by some foreign leaders. Here are some of the reactions:

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto congratulated Trump on his inauguration, saying he would like to strengthen ties, but that sovereignty, national interest and protection of Mexicans would be paramount. Pena Nieto, criticized for meeting Trump last year even after the New York businessman had insulted Mexicans in his election campaign, said on Twitter he would seek "respectful" dialogue with the new US government.

Canada's government, eager to sidestep potentially protectionist US policies, said it was confident Trump would see that working closely with Canada benefited both nations. "We are confident the new Administration will see that Canada's partnership with the US mutually strengthens our two nations and provides real opportunities to grow our respective economies," Joseph Pickerill, spokesman for Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, said in a statement.

Germany will need a new economic strategy geared toward Asia should the new US administration start a trade war with China, Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said, warning against protectionism hours after Trump was sworn in. "What we heard today were high nationalistic tones," Gabriel said in an interview with the public broadcaster ZDF, the first official German reaction to Trump's inauguration. "I think we have to prepare for a rough ride."

Pope Francis urged Trump to be guided by ethical values, saying he must take care of the poor and the outcast during his time in office.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, in a statement posted in his name on the official Palestinian news agency WAFA, congratulated Trump. He added, "I look forward to working with him for the sake of peace, security and stability in a world that is troubled and in a region that lives a tragic era, and to contribute to creating a safe future for everyone."
Palestinians in Bethlehem protest against Trump inauguration

Anders Fogh Rasmussen, former NATO chief and now an adviser to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, said in a telephone interview with Reuters that, "I had hoped and also expected a more internationally oriented speech. Instead we got a very domestically oriented, anti-establishment speech.

"As president of the United States, he should also realize he has become the leader of the free world - that's why people all over the globe are watching his inauguration speech. And that's why I had hoped that he would also address the need for determined American global leadership."

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