President Donald Trump’s roller coaster ride towards diplomacy persisted till Wednesday late night with a tweet calling Obama’s agreement with Australia to accept refugees a “stupid deal”.
Sources told media agencies that Trump objected to an agreement over the US receiving refugees. This was during the US President’s call with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull on Saturday. This was after a call with Mexico’s president where a transcript showed Trump complaining about Mexico’s “handling” of “tough hombres.”
With the two countries joining three other English-speaking countries in an intelligence sharing arrangement known as the “Five Eyes.”, Australia becomes an ally of the United States, reports Washington Post.
The disagreement came about as the two leader discussed a deal which was made under the Obama administration, for the US to receive Australian refugees, who are living under strict government policies.
Most of them are from the seven countries affected by banning of refugees travelling into the US by President Donald Trump. He also suspended the entry of all refugees for 120 days, along with indefinitely suspending the entry of Syrian refugees.
News from sources say that Trump insisted it was a very bad deal for the US to take 2,000 refugees and that one of them was going to be the next Boston bomber.
Turnbull told Trump several times that the agreement was for 1250 refugees and not 2000 as he said in his statement. He also added that Australia was asking to give them to the US for refugee screening, and if the refugees did not pass the US screening process, they would not be allowed to be in the US.
A source told media agencies that Trump abruptly ended the call because he was unhappy. He expressed concern as to how this agreement from President Barack Obama’s administration would go forward given his executive order the day before temporarily suspending the US refugee program.
Turnbull said that the call ended “courteously” in a radio interview on Thursday.
That Thursday, Trump used his remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast — an annual tradition which is usually attended by many other world and religious leaders — to weigh in on the reports circulating on his phone calls.
The Washington Post was the first to report on the details of the Australian call.
Spicer said earlier this week that the Trump administration would honor the agreement, saying the refugees would be submitted to “extreme vetting.”
Turnbull, declining to elaborate on details of the call attempted to keep some semblance of diplomacy.
President Trump’s phone call with Turnbull came after a long day of conversations with other foreign leaders as noted by one-person familiar with the circumstances on Saturday.
Media agencies have also learn’t details of the Friday phone call between Trump and Peña Nieto, who canceled an in-person visit with Trump. This was after insisting that Mexico should pay for a border wall between the two countries.
Press report said Trump threatened to send US troops to stop criminals in Mexico unless the government did more to control them.