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The Latest: Trump cites ‘very good experiences’ with France

September 24, 2018
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President Donald Trump meets with French President Emmanuel Macron at the Lotte New York Palace hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Monday, Sept. 24, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump at the U.N. General Assembly (all times local):

7:15 p.m.

President Donald Trump is meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

Trump says the two men have had “some very good experiences” but acknowledges, “On occasion not so good, but 99 percent very good.”

He says they’ll be discussing a range of subjects, including trade, defense and terrorism.

Trump is also fondly remembering the state dinner he hosted for Macron earlier this year— calling it something “very special” — and the dinner he had with Macron atop the Eiffel Tour when he visited Paris last year.

Trump is expected to return to France in November.

Macron is expressing condolences for the victims of Hurricane Florence, saying the people of France feel very close to Americans.

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5:50 p.m.

President Donald Trump says Egypt is doing an “outstanding job” in the fight against terrorism.

Trump told Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi on Monday that the fight is “not easy” but his country is “at the forefront.”

The leaders met while both were in New York to attend an annual U.N. gathering.

El-Sissi replied that Egypt will be able to eliminate terrorism with Trump’s support. El-Sissi says it’s an obligation Trump has made clear.

Trump told el-Sissi, “We will work with you and we will go all the way.”

At UN high level meeting on counter narcotics Trump calls on world leaders to 'dismantle' illegal drug prodcution and 'defeat' drug addiction

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4:42 p.m.

President Donald Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in have signed the first major agreement of Trump’s trade agenda.

The leaders signed an update to an existing U.S.-South Korea free-trade agreement Monday in New York. Both leaders are attending an annual U.N. gathering.

Trump calls it a “very big deal” and says the new agreement makes significant improvements to reduce the trade deficit between the countries and create new opportunities to export American products to South Korea. He says U.S. automobiles, pharmaceuticals and agricultural products will gain better access to Korean markets.

Moon says companies from both countries will be able to do business under more stable conditions. The South Korean leader also said he hopes the revised agreement with the U.S. will help solidify their cooperation in other areas.

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3:20 p.m.

President Donald Trump says his second meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will unfold much like their first meeting, except for the location.

Trump says it will happen in the “not too distant” future but they will not meet in the same place. He says details will be announced “pretty soon.”

The president and Kim met in Singapore in June to discuss denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.

Trump commented Monday in New York during an appearance with South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

Moon recently met with Kim and brought a message from the North Korean leader for Trump.

Trump also says he’s “excited” to be signing a new trade deal with South Korea. He says the deal to be signed later Monday is great for both countries.

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2:10 p.m.

A senior Russian lawmaker who is under U.S. sanctions is pushing for the release of jailed Russian gun activist Maria Butina during a special visit to New York.

Leonid Slutsky, head of the lower house of parliament’s foreign affairs committee, tells The Associated Press that “we will fight for her (Butina’s) freedom.”

The Russian government has championed Butina’s cause, saying she’s been wrongfully accused of working as a covert agent in the U.S. and infiltrating the National Rifle Association. Butina has pleaded not guilty.

Slutsky says he hopes to meet while in New York with U.S. Senator Rand Paul, who visited Moscow last month and has encouraged more cooperation with Russia despite increasing layers of U.S. sanctions over Russian interference abroad.

Slutsky is under U.S. sanctions over Russia’s annexation of Crimea, but won special permission to come to New York to attend the U.N. meetings.

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12:15 p.m.

The top U.S. diplomat is defending President Donald Trump’s decision to seek out a second summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un even though Kim’s government has not followed through on commitments to halt its nuclear program.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (pahm-PAY’-oh) said Monday on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly, “We’ve been at this the other way an awfully long time and failed.”

He says, “We tried to do details, we tried to do step for step,” but those were unsuccessful.

Pompeo says, “We’re bringing the two senior leaders, the individuals who can actually make the decisions that will move this process forward,” in hopes they can make a breakthrough.

Trump said Monday he hopes to meet with Kim again “quite soon.”

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12:10 p.m.

France’s top diplomat is decrying what he calls U.S. President Donald Trump’s “mix of unilateralism and isolationism” but says that’s no reason to snub Trump or lock him out of world events.

Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian says the U.N. General Assembly this week will test whether people like Trump are “playing together or playing lone horseman, whether they are seeking solutions or sticking to slogans.”

Le Drian said Monday despite Trump’s America first attitude France still wants Trump to join international ceremonies Nov. 11 in Paris marking the end of World War I “to celebrate the sacrifices of American forces.” Le Drian suggested the ceremonies could remind Trump of the importance of international cooperation.

Trump planned to meet later Monday in New York with French President Emmanuel Macron (eh-mahn-yoo-EHL’ mah-KROHN’).

Trump says he’s president of the United States, not the world.

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9:10 a.m.

President Donald Trump says a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is likely to take place “quite soon.”

Speaking at the United Nations, Trump says the relationship with the country whose leader he branded last year as “Little Rocket Man” is much improved.

He said Monday: “It was a different world. That was a dangerous time. This is one year later, a much different time.”

Trump says Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (pahm-PAY’-oh) is working out the details for the second Trump-Kim meeting. Kim requested a second meeting with Trump in a letter this month, and Trump says, “we will be doing that.”

Trump is set to meet with South Korea’s Moon Jae-in later Monday to discuss North Korea and trade details. Moon is expected to convey to Trump a personal message from Kim delivered at their inter-Korean talks last week.

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8:55 a.m.

President Donald Trump is at the United Nations for his second general assembly meeting with world leaders since taking office and has participated in a counter-narcotics event. He’s calling for global action to address the illegal movement and abuse of drugs.

The U.S. in sponsoring the U.N. Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem, which includes signatures from 130 U.N. member states pledging to do more to combat the global drug trade.

Trump said Monday, “The scourge of drug addiction continues to claim too many lives in the United States and nations around the world.”

He adds, “Today we commit to fighting the drug epidemic together.”

Trump was elected promising to address U.S. opioid addiction.

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12:45 a.m.

As he begins the sequel to his stormy U.N. debut, President Donald Trump will again confront the dangers posed by North Korea’s nuclear threat, though its shadow may appear somewhat less ominous than a year ago.

Twelve months after Trump stood at the rostrum of the U.N. General Assembly and derided North Korea’s Kim Jong Un as “Rocket Man,” the push to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula is a work in progress, although fears of war have given way to dreams of rapprochement.

The president, whose bellicose denunciations of Pyongyang have largely given way to hopeful notes, plans to sit down with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who comes bearing a personal message to Trump from North Korea’s Kim after their inter-Korean talks last week.

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