President Donald Trump told Chinese President Xi Jinping that he was the “greatest leader in Chinese history” at the 2019 G-20 summit in Osaka, Japan, according to an excerpt of former National Security Adviser John Bolton’s book published in The Wall Street Journal.
The allegation that Trump praised Xi is among many damning allegations put forth by Bolton in his memoir, “The Room Where It Happened,” which is set to be released by Simon & Schuster next week.
“Trump’s conversations with Xi reflected not only the incoherence in his trade policy but also the confluence in Trump’s mind of his own political interests and U.S. national interests,” Bolton writes.
Bolton alleges that Trump turned the conversation to the upcoming U.S. presidential election at the 2019 Osaka meeting, and went on to ask Xi for help in ensuring his victory. Trump alluded to China’s economic capability when asking for Xi’s help, according to Bolton.
Trump also encouraged Xi to continue building concentration camps, according to Bolton. Trump allegedly said it was the “right thing to do.” (RELATED: Trump Administration Sues John Bolton To Delay Publication Of White House Tell-All)
China has continually repressed its Muslim Uighur population by sending them to concentration camps, according to the Council on Foreign Relations. Several global organizations, such as the UN, have called on the Chinese government to stop this abuse of human rights immediately.
Trump also interfered with Department of Commerce penalties on Chinese tech firms ZTE and Huawei for his own political gain.
“In 2018, for example, he reversed penalties that [Secretary Wilbur Ross] and the Commerce Department had imposed on ZTE.” Bolton writes. “In 2019, he offered to reverse criminal prosecution against Huawei if it would help in the trade deal—which, of course, was primarily about getting Trump re-elected in 2020.”
Bolton also accuses Trump of an unwillingness to publicly address China’s human rights violations for the sake of his own gain. For example, Bolton says that on the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests, Trump elected not to issue an official White House statement.
“That was 15 years ago,” Trump inaccurately said, according to Bolton. “Who cares about it? I’m trying to make a deal. I don’t want anything.”
Meanwhile, the Trump administration is suing Bolton to delay the release of his memoir. Justice Department lawyers claim it includes classified information.
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