Morrison confronts Israeli embassy risks


After working to soothe tensions with major trading partners, Scott Morrison is switching gears to fighting terror during his second day at the East Asia Summit.

Mr Morrison spent much of Wednesday at the summit in Singapore trying to mend fences with Australia’s trade partners.

But the prime minister will concentrate on security and humanitarian issues when he meets Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on Thursday.

Their meeting is expected to centre on counter-terrorism, defence and people smuggling.

Australia will also be looking to understand the Malaysian leader’s reform agenda.

Mr Morrison is then set to meet with Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha to talk about building greater business co-operation.

On Wednesday, the prime minister held talks with Chinese Premier Li Li Keqiang, the first high-level talks in over a year. Mr Morrison also met with Indonesian President Joko Widodo amid tensions over his decision to relocate Australia’s Israel embassy to Jerusalem and their new trade deal.

Mr Morrison was reminded of issues New Zealand has with Australia’s policy of deporting serious criminals with only tenuous links to the country by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

He then voiced his displeasure about a bitter sugar dispute crippling Australian farmers during his first meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Mr Morrison will spend Thursday in Singapore before flying to Darwin to meet with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

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