Trump, Macron look past division on Paris climate pact
PARIS» President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron set aside lingering differences on climate change during their meeting in France on Thursday, asserting that it shouldn’t prevent them from working together toward a post-war roadmap for Syria and to enhance Mideast security.
Trump, standing alongside Macron at a news conference, said the two nations have “occasional disagreements” but that would not disrupt a friendship that dates back to the American Revolution. He remained noncommittal about the United States eventually rejoining the global climate agreement that bears Paris’ name, telling Macron, “if it happens, that will be wonderful. And if it doesn’t, that will be OK, too.”
Macron acknowledged sharp differences
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on the Paris climate pact but said the two leaders could find other areas of cooperation. “Should that have an impact on the discussions we’re having on all other topics? No, absolutely not,” he said.
Trump arrived in the French capital on Thursday for a whirlwind, 36-hour visit to meet with Macron and tackle potential solutions to the crisis in Syria and discuss broader counterterrorism strategies before Bastille Day celebrations Friday.
The president landed in Paris amid questions about emails showing that his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., welcomed the prospect of receiving Russian government support in last year’s presidential campaign between his father and Hillary Clinton.
Trump defended his namesake, saying “most people would have taken that meeting,” a message that contradicted his incoming FBI director’s testimony that Trump Jr. should have alerted authorities.
Trump called his son a “wonderful young man” and continued to downplay the issue, saying that “nothing happened” as a result of the meeting.
During his flight to Paris, Trump had praised his son as “a good boy” and a “good kid” and said that he’d listened to the Russian lawyer’s pitch “out of politeness.”
Trump also continued to cast doubt on the conclusion of U.S. intelligence agencies that Putin had meddled in the election to help him win, telling reporters that “the next time I’m with Putin, I’m going to ask him: Who were you really for? Because I can’t believe that he would have been for me.” The conversation was originally described as off the record, but the White House decided to release portions Thursday.