Pence: US prepared to respond to possible retaliation by Syria

Pence: US prepared to respond to possible retaliation by Syria

Pence: US prepared to respond to possible retaliation by Syria

The United States, Mexico and Canada will expedite NAFTA talks in a push to reach a deal in coming weeks, Mexico's president said on Saturday (April 14) after a meeting with the USA vice president and Canadian prime minister.

He told reporters at the Summit of the Americas in Lima, Peru, yesterday that the operation "significantly eroded" and "degraded" Syrian chemical weapons capabilities and that the mission was "completely accomplished".

After meeting Pena Nieto and Trudeau separately, Pence said he was leaving the summit "very hopeful that we are very close to a renegotiated NAFTA".

As for next steps for the summit, Pence said the US would be submitting a bid to host the ninth Summit of the Americas and repeated a familiar line about the Trump doctrine: "America First does not mean America alone".

Saturday's meeting comes amid tensions between President Donald Trump and Mexico over immigration and the president's calls for a border wall.

"It was the same thing I agreed to with Prime Minister Trudeau", Pena Nieto added.

Pence said he was grateful for the opportunity to meet with the Mexican president, although he made no reference to Pena Nieto's call for "mutual respect".

Pence says he looks forward to discussing NAFTA and a broad range of issues between the two countries.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence is praising Peru's "strong stand" on the "tyranny and humanitarian crisis" in Venezuela.

Responding to a question, Pence said that the U.S. message to Russian Federation is: "You're on the wrong side of history".

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro was barred from attending the summit over his plans to hold a presidential election that the opposition is boycotting and that many foreign governments consider a sham. The allied strike on Friday was prompted by a suspected chemical attack in a suburb of Damascus last week that left dozens dead.

In condemning the US-led attack, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad insisted on Saturday that the missile strikes would only strengthen his nation's resolve to keep its fight against Western-backed terror groups and "crush terrorism in every inch of the nation".

There had been hopes leading up to this weekend's summit that an agreement might be signed, but that did not happen and instead, US negotiators softened their demands on autos even as Trump said he will to renegotiate "forever".

This was Pence's first media interaction after U.S. forces launched precision strikes against Assad regime targets associated with the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

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