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05 May 2017

Trump hails US-Australia ties during meeting with PM Turnbull

US President Donald Trump said his relationship with Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull is "fantastic" after the two leaders met in New York.

Trump said both leaders "reaffirmed ties" between their countries and discussed multiple issues, including economic, trade, and national security co-operation, as well as migration.

Ties between the two allies were strained following an acrimonious phone call between Trump and Turnbull in February.

In context

Trump and Turnbull set aside "testy" relationship

Trump: "I love Australia, I always have"

"We get along great. We have a fantastic relationship, I love Australia, I always have," said Trump following his meeting with Turnbull. Trump said he would visit Australia, which he described as "one of the most beautiful places on earth."

Why Trump's relations with Turnbull had gotten strained


Why Trump's relations with Turnbull had gotten strained

Trump was initially reluctant to honor an agreement by the Obama administration to accept 1,200 refugees from controversial Australian detention camps.

He had called the resettlement agreement a "dumb deal."

In February, Trump spoke to Turnbull about the issue and dubbed the phone call his "worst" that day, straining relations between the leaders.

However, the US later said it would honor the resettlement agreement.

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Trump calls media coverage of phone call "fake news"

During their face-to-face meeting, Trump said the refugee issue "has been worked out for a long time." He called media coverage of their February phone call "a little bit of fake news." He latter said, "We got a little testy, but that's OK."

On defense

Leaders reaffirm US-Australia defense ties

In a symbolic gesture, Trump and Turnbull met on board USS Intrepid, a WW2-era aircraft carrier, used to fight Japan in the Pacific.

Australia is one of the US' staunch defense allies and its troops have fought alongside American soldiers in all major wars, including Iraq and Afghanistan.

Turnbull said Trump has reaffirmed America's commitment as a security guarantor in the Pacific.

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