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April 18, 2018

Matthews Talks TPP, Syria Airstrike & More on CGTN TV

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As U.S. President Donald Trump hosted Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Mar-a-Lago, IPI’s Dr. Merrill Matthews joined a panel on CGTN-TV’s The Heat to discuss the leaders’ meeting and headlines from this week.

Among the topics discussed on the panel, Matthews addressed trade concerns, denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, and the U.S.-led airstrike on Syrian chemical weapons facilities.

When asked about President Trump’s actions including Japan in its tariffs on imported steel and aluminum, Matthews said: “Trump blindsides a lot of people.”

“Japan had gone a long way in the Transpacific Partnership in lowering some of its tariffs,” said Matthews. “They had taken some major steps. For the U.S. to drop out of that was a real blow to Japan. And now President Trump apparently wants to consider re-entering that.”

Regarding the strategic strike on Syria, Matthews observed two specific achievements in public opinion and international relations.

“The targeted, limited attack shows it was meant to punish Syria, not overthrow the regime, which has been praised by the American public,” said Matthews. He also said the strike helped to cement relations with allies Great Britain and France, especially since President Macron will be giving a speech to a joint session of Congress on April 25.

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