Najib, Trump in talks at White House

Najib, Trump in talks at White House

The US president is expected to focus significantly on security issues with the Malaysian prime minister during their discussions at the White House on Tuesday.

The news was disclosed through the official page of the White House.

Najib said Malaysia's Employees Provident Fund, a major pension fund, wanted to spend $3 billion to $4 billion on US infrastructure development.

The Malaysian Embassy would not confirm to the outlet that Najib and his contingent spent the night at the hotel, where the "Trump Townhouse" suite goes for more than $18,750 per night.

US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday (Sep 12) he and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak are discussing large trade pacts and a deal involving Boeing jets and praised the Malaysian leader's efforts in the fight against terrorism.

But it has been at the center of investigations in the United States and several countries amid allegations of a global embezzlement and money-laundering scheme.

On Tuesday afternoon, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders was asked about the report and defended Najib's choice of lodging - a choice that directly lines Trump's pockets since he still owns the hotel.

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But the run-up to Najib's arrival has been dominated by questions about his entanglement in an ongoing US Justice Department investigation. He said: "We bring to the table a great deal of value propositions".

The prime minister also said his country remains committed to fighting terrorist groups, such as Islamic State and al-Qaida.

Najib held a news conference with Malaysian reporters from inside the hotel, according to an Instagram account belonging to a member of parliament accompanying him on the trip, ThinkProgress reported.

Both the prime minister and the fund deny any wrongdoing, but the Justice Department has filed civil lawsuits to seize assets, from high-end real estate to artworks, it says are worth about $1.7 billion.

Najib stressed the key for the United States "to win the hearts and minds of the Muslim world" is to support 'moderate and progressive Muslim regimes and governments around the world, ' such as Malaysia's 'because that is the true face of Islam, that is the authentic face of Islam'. He said additional investments were planned from Malaysia's state investor Khazanah Nasional Bhd, which he said has an office in Silicon Valley.

Najib said, however, that critics 'falsely running down Malaysia's vibrant democracy and spreading smears and falsehoods about this government in foreign newspapers just for political gain is another matter'. "He will also try to convey the impression that the US investigation on 1MDB has nothing to do with him", said James Chin, who heads the Asia Institute in Australia's University of Tasmania.

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