The Latest: Trump mocks teen climate change activist

September 24, 2019 GMT
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President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the InterContinental Barclay hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Monday, Sept. 23, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the InterContinental Barclay hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Monday, Sept. 23, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump’s U.N. visit (all times local):

11:40 p.m.

President Donald Trump is mocking a teenage activist who gave an impassioned speech at the United Nations urging world leaders to do more to combat climate change.

Swedish 16-year-old activist Greta Thunberg scolded the audience at the U.N. Climate Action Summit on Monday, repeatedly asking, “How dare you?”

Thunberg said: “We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and yet all you can talk about is money. You are failing us.”


In a tweet late Monday, Trump says: “She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future. So nice to see!”

Trump had spent only a few minutes at the climate summit, a centerpiece of this year’s U.N. General Assembly schedule.


9:05 p.m.

President Donald Trump breezed by a major climate change summit Monday at the United Nations, choosing to focus instead on religious persecution, an issue that resonates with his evangelical supporters.

Trump arrived in New York against a backdrop of swirling international tensions, including questions about his relationship with Ukraine, the uncertain future of Brexit, the U.S. trade war with China, stalled nuclear negotiations with North Korea and a weakening global economy. The president met Monday with leaders of Pakistan, Poland, New Zealand, Singapore, Egypt and South Korea.

He will speak before the U.N. General Assembly Tuesday, with his administration’s desire for a collective response to escalating aggression by Iran high on the agenda.


6:20 p.m.

President Donald Trump got a question that was music to his ears during one of his meetings with foreign leaders at the United Nations.

When Trump met with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday, a reporter from the Pakistani press corps asked Trump about mediating the India-Pakistan standoff over the disputed region Kashmir.

When the reporter told Trump he would deserve a Nobel Prize if he could resolve the dispute, the president readily agreed.

Trump tells the reporter he’d get the Nobel Prize “for a lot of things if they gave it out fairly, which they don’t.”

Trump adds that his predecessor, Barack Obama, got the prize so early in his presidency that “he had no idea why he got it.”

Trump adds, “That was the only thing I agreed with him on.”



6:10 p.m.

President Donald Trump is being noncommittal about prospects for a third summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, saying that while people would like to see it happen, he wants to know what would come out of it.

Trump describes the first two summits as a success, emphasizing no nuclear testing from North Korea “for quite a long period of time.”

Trump’s comments on Monday came before a meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the United Nations.

Trump also continues to dismiss concerns about North Korea’s testing of short-range missiles. Trump says a lot of people in a lot of countries test short-range missiles.

U.S.-led diplomacy on how to rid North Korea of its nuclear weapons collapsed after Trump rejected Kim’s demand for sweeping sanctions relief in return for partial disarmament steps during their second summit.


5:25 p.m.

President Donald Trump says he’s not worried about anti-government protests that broke out in several Egyptian cities late Friday calling on Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi to step down.

The small street demonstrations were quickly dispersed by riot police using batons and tear gas.

Speaking to reporters Monday while meeting with Egypt’s president, Trump defended el-Sissi, a former army general who has overseen a political crackdown, silencing critics and jailing thousands.

Trump says before el-Sissi became president, “there was very little order, there was chaos.” Trump says el-Sissi is a “great leader.”

El-Sissi says “political Islam” has led to instability in the region, and he says the people of Egypt reject it.

The two leaders spoke as Trump is attending three days of meetings at the United Nations.


5:20 p.m.

President Donald Trump is openly questioning Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin over a decision to delay a visit by China officials to U.S. farms.

Trump asked, “Why did we do that exactly?” when Mnuchin said last week’s visit to the Midwest was postponed by the United States.

Mnuchin says it was done to avoid any confusion surrounding the ongoing U.S.-China trade talks. But Trump says he wants the Chinese to buy more farm products.

The ongoing dispute between China and the United States has rattled markets and helped slow the American economy and could endanger Trump’s re-election chances.

Mnuchin told Fox Business Network later Monday that talks would resume in two weeks.

Trump spoke Monday on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.


4:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump says Iran is one of the topics he will raise Tuesday during his speech before the United Nations General Assembly.

The U.S. is formulating its response to a drone and missile attack on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia, with the U.S. blaming Iran for the attack. Last week, the Pentagon said it would deploy additional troops and military equipment to Saudi Arabia, and announced additional sanctions against Iran.

Trump says, “We have a lot of pressure on them right now, more pressure than they’ve ever had.”

He adds, “A lot of things are happening with respect to Iran, a lot more than you would know, a lot more than the media knows.”

Trump is attending three days of meetings at the U.N.


3:15 p.m.

President Donald Trump says more U.S. troops will be stationed in Poland as a result of a new cooperation agreement between the two countries.

Trump says Poland will pick up the expense of new facilities for the U.S. troops. He says Poland came to the U.S. and asked for more troops to be located there.

Trump announced the agreement during a meeting with Poland President Andrzej Duda at the United Nations. The two presidents were originally scheduled to ink the document in Warsaw earlier this month during a visit by Trump for events to mark the 80th anniversary of the start of World War II.

But Trump canceled his planned trip to Poland at the last minute, saying he needed to stay and monitor Hurricane Dorian as it approached the southern U.S. state of Florida.

Trump says he hopes to visit the country fairly soon. He said the U.S. had agreed that Poland will become part of a program that allows pre-approved travelers from participating countries to visit the U.S. for up to 90 days without obtaining a non-immigrant visitor visa. Trump says the details of the visa waiver program will be worked out “over the next couple of months.”


1:55 p.m.

President Donald Trump is renewing his willingness to mediate negotiations between India and Pakistan over the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir, claiming he has “never failed as an arbitrator.”

Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan, and each claims rights to all of it. The nuclear-armed rivals have fought two wars over the region’s control.

Trump said Monday he is hopeful the two nations can come together and do something smart but both sides would need to agree on his involvement. That’s something India has resisted.

Trump says “you have to have two parties who want to agree.”

The Republican president is meeting with various world leaders at the United Nations.

Trump’s comments came during a meeting with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan a day after Trump attended a rally in Houston with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


11:40 a.m.

President Donald Trump is calling on world leaders to take action to protect religious freedom in the wake of rising persecution of people based on their faith and beliefs. It’s an issue that resonates with evangelicals who support the president’s reelection.

In a speech at the United Nations on Monday, Trump says about 80 percent of the world’s population live in countries where religious liberty is threatened, restricted or even banned. He says people of all faiths are being jailed, sanctioned, tortured and killed — often at the hands of their government — simply because they expressed their beliefs.

He says it’s the “moral duty” of all nations to stop the crimes against people of faith, release prisoners of conscience and repeal laws restricting religious liberty.

Trump is beginning three days of meetings at the U.N.


12:20 a.m.

President Donald Trump heads into his three-day visit to the United Nations this week hoping to lean on strained alliances while fending off questions about whether he sought foreign help to damage a political rival.

Trump’s latest U.N. trip comes after nearly three years of an “America First” foreign policy that has unsettled allies and shredded multinational pacts.

A centerpiece of this year’s U.N. schedule will be a Monday session on climate change that Trump plans to skip.

Instead, he will address a meeting about the persecution of religious minorities, particularly Christians, an issue that resonates with Trump’s evangelical supporters.