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Trump's Indonesia Projects Move Ahead Despite Pledge to End Foreign Deals

Image: Trump's Indonesia Projects Move Ahead Despite Pledge to End Foreign Deals

 President-elect Donald Trump talks to reporters during a New Year's Eve party at Mar-a-Lago, Saturday, Dec. 31, 2016, in Palm Beach, Fla.

By    |   Sunday, 01 Jan 2017 11:00 PM

Despite President-elect Donald Trump’s pledge to end foreign business deals that could pose conflicts of interest, his company is going ahead with two Indonesian resort projects where construction has not even begun, The New York Times reports.

Trump has built relationships with powerful political figures in Indonesia, where such connections are vital to ensure that such projects continue.

Such large undertakings are often difficult to separate from various political issues between the United States and Indonesia, such as trade and distorted claims over the South China Sea, especially since Trump’s partners in the deals also have political ambitions.

One partner is a billionaire media mogul who ran for vice president of Indonesia in 2014 and is preparing for a political run in 2019, ABC reported.

“You could have two world leaders that are business partners,” Richard Painter, who was a White House ethics lawyer in George W. Bush’s administration, told The New York Times. “It makes it almost impossible to conduct diplomacy in an evenhanded manner. That does not work.”

As part of his connections through the projects, Trump also gained access to other Indonesian political figures, including Setya Novanto, the speaker of the House of Representatives who at one point was forced to give up his post due to corruption allegations.

A Trump spokeswoman said these projects would move forward because the agreements on them were “binding contracts,” and insists that construction work has begun on aspects of the projects.

Documents in the New York Times report show that Trump received payments between $1 million and $5 million for each of the hotel projects between January 2015 and May 2016.
Trump himself has accused the news media of exaggerating any potential conflicts due to his business holdings.

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Despite President-elect Donald Trump's pledge to end foreign business deals that could pose conflicts of interest, his company is going ahead with two Indonesian resort projects where construction has not even begun, The New York Times reports.
trump, indonesia, business, trump family business, trump business
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2017-00-01
Sunday, 01 Jan 2017 11:00 PM
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