Don­ald all at sea over Chi­nese claim

The Daily Examiner - - NEWS / NATION & WORLD -

DON­ALD Trump has touted his ne­go­ti­at­ing skills while in­sert­ing him­self in a dis­pute among Asian na­tions over con­trol of busy ship­ping chan­nels in the South China Sea.

Speak­ing in Viet­nam be­fore ar­riv­ing in the Philip­pines for the sum­mit of Asian lead­ers, the US Pres­i­dent said: “I know we’ve had a dis­pute for quite a while with China. If I can help in any way, I’m a very good me­di­a­tor and a very good ar­bi­tra­tor. I have done plenty of it from both sides. So if I can help you, let me know.”

Philip­pines Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte quickly shot down Mr Trump’s of­fer to help with the con­tested wa­ter­way.

“We have to be friends. The other hot­heads would like us to con­front China and the rest of the world on so many is­sues,” Mr Duterte said.

“The South China Sea is bet­ter left un­touched, no­body can af­ford to go to war.”

PHOTO: AN­DREW HARNIK/AP

STRETCHED: US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump, cen­tre, seems to be gri­mac­ing in pain as he does the “ASEAN-way hand­shake” with Viet­namese Pres­i­dent Tran Dai Quang, left, and Philip­pines Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte at the ASEAN Sum­mit in Manila.

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