American President Donald Trump told the United Nations General Assembly Tuesday that the United States does not seek conflict with any other nation.
Trump added that he will not be slow to defend America’s interests.
He said, “The United States, after having spent $2.5 trillion since my re-election to rebuild our great military, is also by far the world’s most powerful nation. Hopefully it will never have to use this power.”
Trump described the government of Iran as one of the world’s greatest threats. He said that Iran oppresses its citizens at home while fueling conflicts and terrorism in other areas. He said that as long as this continues, U.S. restrictions against Iran will remain in force.
However, Trump also noted that some historical enemies of the U.S. are now close friends. “The United States has never believed in permanent enemies. We want partners…,” he said.
The American president also had strong words for China. He said that China would no longer be permitted to “game” the international trade system.
The U.S. trade war with China could affect Trump’s hopes of being re-elected next year. Some of his comments appeared to be directed at American voters.
“The American people are absolutely committed to restoring balance to our relationship with China,” he said. “But as I have made very clear, I will not accept a bad deal for the American people.”
Trump said the American government is also watching China’s actions in Hong Kong, where pro-democracy demonstrations have turned violent.
Trump raised another issue that is important to his supporters: the flow of undocumented migrants into the United States. He urged Central Americans against leaving their home countries and unlawfully crossing the U.S. border.
Trump accused activists and non-governmental organizations of supporting illegal migration. He called their policies cruel, evil and unjust.
He thanked Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador for sending 27,000 troops to his country’s northern border to stop migrants from entering the United States.
“Mexico is showing us great respect and I respect them in return,” Trump said.
The president also sent warnings to leaders in Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba.
Trump only briefly noted his diplomatic efforts with North Korea. He did not say when he might meet again with the country’s leader, Kim Jong Un.
I’m Caty Weaver.
VOA White House correspondent Steve Herman reported this story. George Grow adapted his report for Learning English. Caty Weaver was the editor.
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Words in This Story
game – v. to play or influence something in an unfair way
absolutely – adv. completely; totally
committed – v. feeling loyalty to a cause