Pence praises Indonesia's moderate form of Islam

Indonesian army rejects coup plot media reports

Indonesian army rejects coup plot media reports

Pence is expected to largely discuss trade with his counterpart, as he did in Japan, the previous stopover of his Asia-Pacific tour, which will conclude on Saturday in Australia.

The two-day stop in Indonesia comes as President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo deals with a serious political setback from the defeat of his ally in the election for Jakarta governor.

Kalla added that Pence did not discuss about PT Freeport Indonesia. Pence will also visit Istiqlal Mosque, the largest mosque in Southeast Asia.

From the wind-swept deck of a massive aircraft carrier, Vice President Mike Pence yesterday warned North Korea not to test the resolve of the USA military, promising it would make an "overwhelming and effective" response to any use of conventional or nuclear weapons.

The vice president praised Indonesia for its moderate form of Islam and said the two countries would continue to cooperate on combating terrorism.

Pence's visit represents the Trump administration's most high-profile outreach to Muslims since coming to office and echoes a similar trip by Barack and Michelle Obama in 2010.

The vice president's upbeat tone about Indonesian Islam contrasts with growing concerns inside the country that the traditionally inclusive brand of the religion is under threat from hardliners and a trend towards conservatism.

Indonesia is the first Muslim-majority country Pence will be visiting.

Afterwards, he met religious leaders from various faiths, including Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Hindus and others.

President Trump meets with Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni, 3 p.m., with news conference timing to be announced.

In comments reported by the national broadcaster NHK on Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso said he believed the TPP trade talks would offer greater advantages to Japan than bilateral negotiations with the U.S.

"President Trump's hostile pronouncements on Islam and Muslims have done considerable damage to his reputation in the Islamic world".

"President Trump's hostile pronouncements on Islam and Muslims have done considerable damage to his reputation in the Islamic world. It would take more than a visit to fix the damage", said Fawaz Gerges, an expert on the Middle East and Islam at the London School of Economics.

Official data from the country's ministry puts total trade between the two countries at $23.44billion in 2016 - with Indonesia recording a surplus of $8.84billion.

"The policy of President Trump is to marshal the support of our allies in the region - Japan, South Korea, nations around the world, and China", he said. Indonesian and Chinese vessels have clashed repeatedly in recent times in waters near Indonesia's Natuna Islands, on the fringes of the disputed waters.

In a joint press conference following Thursday's talks, President Joko Widodo said his country had secured commitments from the U.S. to improve the two countries' strategic partnership, adding that the focus would be on trade and investment in the future.

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