Trump threatened to withhold aid unless Palestine returns to negotiating table. Palestine has snubbed Trump since his decision on Jerusalem, saying the US has lost any moral authority to broker peace.

Trump, never invited as a businessman, is the first US president to attend Davos since Bill Clinton in 2000. January 25, 2018
Trump, never invited as a businessman, is the first US president to attend Davos since Bill Clinton in 2000. January 25, 2018 (Reuters)

US President Donald Trump swaggered into the lion's den to confront the world's political and business elite on Thursday, as his "America First" administration executes an anti-globalist manifesto in trade, taxes and currency rates.

A year after taking office, Trump joined the World Economic Forum in Davos with foreign exchange markets in turmoil and Washington's trading partners in uproar.

"It's very exciting to be here, we're very happy to be here. The United States is doing very well," Trump said, before heading into bilateral talks with British Prime Minister Theresa May.

"This will be a very exciting two days," he said, after having demonised the globalist Davos crowd on his unorthodox march to the White House.

Other government leaders and business tycoons in Davos are agog at the tempestuous course of US policy under Trump. He is due to address the forum on its closing day on Friday at the end of a week that saw his administration announce a new package of trade tariffs and spark turmoil on the currency markets.

Sarah Morice has more. 

Trump threatens to pull aid 

Trump threatened to withhold aid to the Palestinians if they did not pursue peace with Israel, saying they had snubbed the United States by not meeting Vice President Mike Pence during a recent visit.

Trump, speaking after a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Davos said he aimed for peace in the Middle East.

Palestinians shunned Pence's visit to the region this month after Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel's capital and vowed to begin moving the US embassy to the city, whose status is at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Trump's endorsement in December of Israel's claim to Jerusalem as its capital drew universal condemnation from Arab leaders and criticism around the world. It also broke with decades of US policy that the city's status must be decided in negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

Source: Reuters