(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
US Vice President Mike Pence has met with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull for the first time on Saturday in Sydney, where the two are expected to discuss trade and regional security, Australian and US officials said.
Australia will be Pence's fourth stop on a 10-day tour of US allies in the Asia-Pacific region that has included a series of round tables with business executives in South Korea, Japan, and Indonesia.
His trip to Australia is the first by a senior official in President Donald Trump's administration as the United States looks to strengthen economic ties and security cooperation amid disputes in the South China Sea and tension on the Korean peninsula.
Australia's relationship with the new administration in Washington got off to a rocky start when Trump lambasted Turnbull over a refugee resettlement arrangement that Trump labelled a "dumb" deal.