4 October 2013, 09:08

No Putin-Obama meeting at APEC summit in Indonesia

путин обама путин

US President Barack Obama has cancelled his trip to the upcoming Indonesian summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Organization due to financial constraints caused by a US government shutdown, White House spokesman Jay Carney said in a statement on Friday.

“The President made this decision based on the difficulty in moving forward with foreign travel in the face of a shutdown," said Jay Carney in a statement, "and his determination to continue pressing his case that Republicans should immediately allow a vote to reopen the government, Carney said.

Obama called Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Brunei Sultan Hassanal Blokiah and expressed regret at not being able to visit their countries.

Earlier, it was reported the Obama cancelled visits to Malaysia and the Philippines as part of his planned Southeast Asian tour.

Brunei 'disappointed' by cancelled Obama visit

Brunei is "disappointed" over US President Barack Obama's decision to cancel an Asia trip that would have included a summit next week in the sultanate, a foreign ministry official said Friday.

The White House said late Thursday that Obama had shelved a trip that also was to include attendance at a larger Asia-Pacific summit in Indonesia, blaming the crisis back home over the US government shutdown.

"While, politically, we understand the reason for the president's decision, of course it is disappointing for all those involved," a Brunei foreign ministry official said.

"Not just those in diplomatic circles, but for a small country to host the president of the United States is a source of excitement, particularly someone of Obama's celebrity."

"I'm sure people looked forward to the pageantry of a presidential visit," said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity as is routine for officials with the ministry.

After days of speculation that the trip was threatened by the US government funding crisis, the White House confirmed Obama would miss the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit starting Monday in Bali and the East Asia summit in Brunei later in the week.

He also had planned to visit Malaysia and the Philippines but will instead by represented by US Secretary of State John Kerry.

The foreign ministry official said Obama informed Brunei's ruler, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, of the scuttled trip in a phone call on Friday morning.

The official added that Obama had been set to stay at the official residence of one of Brunei's crown princes.

Brunei, a small, oil-rich sultanate on Borneo island, is the 2013 chair of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

That makes it the host of next week's ASEAN summit and the larger East Asia summit a day later including the United States, China and other countries.

Putin, Obama to meet Oct. 7 to discuss Syria progress

Russian President Vladimir Putin is poised to meet with his US counterpart, Barack Obama, on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation on October 7. The two leaders are expected to discuss the progress of their Syria plan, Russian presidential aide Yuri Ushakov said.

"The sides are coordinating organizational parameters of this meeting, and we think the meeting will take place," Ushakov told a press briefing on Thursday.

"That was our proposition, which the U.S. side immediately supported," he said. According to the presidential aide, the Russian and US leaders will discuss, amongst other issues, "the development of [earlier] agreements and prospects for joint work on the Syrian dossier."

Voice of Russia, RIA, Interfax, AFP

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