President Donald Trump will express a desire for other nations “to exert their sovereignty to solve challenges“ and to listen “to what America can do to help” when he addresses the United Nations General Assembly later this week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday.
Pompeo and Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley addressed reporters Monday at a press conference kicking off Trump’s week in New York, which is jam-packed with meetings and diplomatic events. Haley echoed Pompeo in emphasizing sovereignty as she explained why the Trump administration has removed the U.S. from a handful of international agreements.
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“It’s been an interesting time knowing that since the secretary general’s meeting last year we have pulled out of the Paris Accord, we have pulled out of the Global Compact, we have pulled out of the Iran Deal,” Haley said. “And all of that is to say that the United States is determined to obviously be involved in multilateral organizations where we see it, but not in the way that they’re mandated on what the United States does or that it infringes on the American people.”
Trump has been wary of international agreements throughout his time in office, pulling out not only of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, commonly referred to as the Iran nuclear deal, and the Paris climate change agreement but also out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. The president has threatened other trade agreements, including NAFTA and trade deals with South Korea and Europe.
National security adviser John Bolton, who also spoke to reporters Monday, highlighted sovereignty and its infringement by international agreements but was careful not to reveal details of the president’s upcoming speech.
“We understand sovereignty not to be vested in the head of state. We understand as the framer’s said in the Constitution itself. We the people. We the people are sovereign in America. So that infringements on our sovereignty are not infringements on distractions or infringements on the government, they’re an infringement on the people themselves,” the national security adviser said.