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Donald Trump embarks on marathon tour of Asia


US President Donald Trump has embarked on an 11-day trip to Asia during which he will visit Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines. It will be the longest tour of Asia by a US president in 25 years.

The trip comes at a time of heightened tensions with North Korea over its nuclear programme and missile tests, BBC reports. Mr Trump is expected to show a united front with South Korea and Japan while pressing China to take a stronger line with Pyongyang.

President Trump flew first to the US state of Hawaii where he visited the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor - the scene of the 1941 Japanese attack that drew the US into World War Two. He also took part in a briefing at the US Pacific Command.

From Hawaii, he and First Lady Melania Trump will head to Japan and then on to South Korea.

Mr Trump has previously exchanged some fiery rhetoric with North Korea over its ballistic missile tests but aides said earlier this week that he would not go to the heavily fortified demilitarized zone (DMZ) on the border between the South and North. He is, however, to visit Camp Humphreys, a US military complex south of the capital, Seoul.

In Vietnam, Mr Trump will attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation summit in Danang and make a state visit to Hanoi. His final engagement will be a summit of South-East Asian nations in the Philippine capital, Manila.

The last time a US president made such a marathon trip to Asia was when George HW Bush visited the region in late 1991 and early 1992. While in Japan on that trip, Mr Bush fainted and vomited during a banquet.


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