Relations between the United States and Australia looks to have taken a hit after President Trump bashed Australia’s Prime Minister over a refugee deal.
Donald Trump slammed Malcolm Turnbull before hanging the phone over a proposed asylum seeker deal agreed to by the Obama administration.
The deal was agreed late last year due to Australia fighting alongside US troops in the Middle-East. It includes resettling up to 1,250 asylum seekers who are held in processing camps in Papua New Guinea and Nauru.
Australia would in return take refugees from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.
According to Trump, the problem with the refugee deal is that a majority of them are from Iran and Iraq which are among the seven countries whose citizens are barred from entering the US.
Trump told Turnbull he was ”going to get killed” politically for accepting the refugees just a day after signing the executive order.
Trump then accused PM Turnbull of trying to send the ‘next Boston bombers’ to the US on the phone call which lasted just 25 minutes instead of the slated 1 hour.
Senior US officials who were briefed on the issue said Trump abruptly ended the two leaders’ first official conversation although PM Turnbull has since denied this.
PM Turnbull told Sydney Talk Radio that as far as the call was concerned, he was very disappointed. But that the report which says Trump hung up is not correct.
”The call ended courteously,” he said.
The senior US officials also said that Trump was condescending to Turnbull as he boasted about the magnitude of his electoral college victory.
He reportedly also bragged about speaking with four other world leaders that day including Vladimir Putin before saying: ”this was the worst call by far.”
When PM Turnbull suggested to move on from discussing the refugee deal to other issues like the Syrian conflict, Trump decided to end the call.
Australia has long remained one of America’s strongest allies but the harsh tone of the conversation between the two leaders will only cause discord between the two countries.