US President Donald J. Trump (2-L) and First Lady Melania Trump (L) view the Rose Garden with Prime Minister of Australia Malcolm Turnbull (2-R) and his wife Lucy Turnbull (R) after their arrival at the South Portico of the White House in Washington, DC, USA, 23 February 2018.
US President Donald J. Trump (2-L) and First Lady Melania Trump (L) view the Rose Garden with Prime Minister of Australia Malcolm Turnbull (2-R) and his wife Lucy Turnbull (R) after their arrival at the South Portico of the White House in Washington, DC, USA, 23 February 2018. EPA - Oliver Contreras

Trump keen to visit Australia

US PRESIDENT Donald Trump said he was keen to visit Australia as he sat down with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull inside the Oval Office overnight.

Mr Turnbull had a one-on-one meeting with the President Friday afternoon, Washington time, hoping to put domestic dramas around Barnaby Joyce quitting behind him.

Asked if he would like to come Down Under, Mr Trump said "I would, yeah, we will be there, great place", as Mr Turnbull, his wife Lucy and First Lady Melania Trump looked on.

Trade and national security will be high on the agenda for the two leaders' Oval Office face-to-face and subsequent working lunch.

Mr Trump said it was an "honour" to host the Turnbulls at the White House.

"It is a terrific relationship and probably stronger now than ever before," he said.

He added that the two leaders were working on trade deals and military protection.

"A lot of good things will come out of this visit," he said before inviting the PM to make remarks.

Mr Turnbull said he appreciates the Trumps' "hospitality and friendship" and noted 100 years of military ties between Australia and the US.

"We have been fighting side by side in freedom's cause ever since. So a 100 years of mateship and 100 more to come," Mr Turnbull said.

The two leaders will hold a joint press conference in the White House's East Room at 6am, Australian eastern daylight saving time.

Mr Turnbull will hope to be able to focus on his US-Australian relations after the Nationals leader resigned yesterday over his affair with his former staffer Vikki Campion and revelations of a sexual harassment claim against him.

Mrs Turnbull will enjoy a White House lunch with Mrs Trump, and Mr Turnbull will also sit down with Vice President Mike Pence.

The US rolled out the red carpet for the PM yesterday as well, when he laid a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery.

He was welcomed to the war cemetery with an honour guard and 19-gun salute, and the army band played Advance Australia Fair.

Mr and Mrs Turnbull also visited the grave of Royal Australian Air Force Pilot Officer Francis Milne, the first and only Australian buried at the cemetery.


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