05 June 2017

News Story: Trump gov't to stay put in Asia, defense chief says

By Lee Chi-dong

SINGAPORE, June 3 (Yonhap) -- Addressing the Shangri-La Dialogue here, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Saturday sent a clear message: We won't turn away from Asia.

It marked an unusual declaration by a top Trump government official on its specific approach toward the region, while coordination with China remains a challenge especially on North Korea and wrangling over the South China Sea.

Five months into office, President Donald Trump's Asia strategy is still in question.

His government has jettisoned such symbolic expressions as "Asia rebalancing" or "Asia pivot" used by the Obama administration.

Speaking at the first plenary session of the 16th Asia Security Summit, Mattis presented a three-point strategy on the region by the Trump government.

"Our primary effort remains strengthening alliances," he stressed, referring to South Korea, Japan, Australia, the Philippines, and Thailand.

Read the full story at YonhapNews