Trump delivers 2nd State of Union address
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Trump delivers 2nd State of Union address

Speaking in the chamber of the House of Representatives on Tuesday, Trump once again pledged to build a wall along the US border with Mexico to prevent immigrants, whom he called “criminals,” from crossing into the US. “Now is the time for the Congress to show the world that America is committed to ending illegal immigration and putting the ruthless coyotes, cartels, drug dealers, and human traffickers out of business.” “In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall -- but the proper wall never got built. I will get it built,” Trump said. Trump has made his hard-line stance on immigration an integral part of his presidency and has promised to build a wall along the Mexican border to curb the flow of migrants from Mexico and Central America. The president's latest remarks come as he and Congress will need to try and find a solution to avert another government shutdown on February 15 even though he and Pelosi are still at an impasse over the wall. “Simply put, walls work and walls save lives,” Trump said. “So let’s work together, compromise and reach a deal that will truly make America safe.” Trump also encouraged unity between legislative and executive branches of the government at a moment of deep partisan division, calling for a new era of compromise on immigration and security in his address. At the same time, he warned that Democratic efforts to investigate his administration would endanger the US economy. "An economic miracle is taking place in the United States and the only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous partisan investigations." '2nd summit with Kim due in Vietnam' Trump also announced that his second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was slated for late February in Vietnam. “If I had not been elected President of the United States, we would right now, in my opinion, be in a major war with North Korea with potentially millions of people killed. Much work remains to be done, but my relationship with Kim Jong-un is a good one. And Chairman Kim and I will meet again on February 27 and 28 in Vietnam.” Trump held a historic meeting with Kim in Singapore in June, when the two agreed to work towards denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Subsequent diplomacy between the two sides has, however, made little progress in recent months, mainly because the US refuses to lift harsh sanctions on the North. 'US must end fighting wars in Mideast' Trump defended his decision to accelerate an end to the war in Afghanistan and to pull US troops out of Syria. “Our brave troops have now been fighting in the Middle East for almost 19 years,” Trump said. “As a candidate for president, I pledged a new approach. Great nations do not fight endless wars.” On Afghanistan, the president said he had sped up talks with the Taliban terrorist group, claiming that the two sides are able to find a political solution to the crisis in the war-torn country. “I have also accelerated our negotiations to reach a political settlement in Afghanistan. Our troops have fought with unmatched valor -- and thanks to their bravery, we are now able to pursue a political solution to this long and bloody conflict.” He added, "We do not know whether we will achieve an agreement – but we do know that after two decades of war, the hour has come to at least try for peace." Washington and the Taliban ended six days of negotiations in Doha, Qatar last month, with Kabul saying that the US had assured Afghan officials that the focus of the talks was on finding a way to facilitate peace and ensure foreign troop withdrawal, rather than the establishment of a government. Up until now, the Taliban have repeatedly rejected the Afghan government’s offer of talks, preferring instead to negotiate directly with the American side.  

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