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Trump delays decision on Paris Climate deal

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Trump has delayed a decision on the Paris climate accord until he returns from Europe.

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11th-May-2017       
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AFP, Washington :
President Donald Trump delayed a decision to honor or walk away from the Paris climate accord until he returns from Europe late this month, leaving global partners in limbo today.
Divisions within Trump's administration have left in doubt the participation of the world's number two carbon polluter-after China-in the landmark 2015 agreement to limit global warming.
After months of uncertainty, Trump had appeared to be edging toward a decision.
But the White House postponed a key meeting scheduled for today that could have determined the fate of the 196-nation accord, and hours later said there would be no decision before the end of the month.
Trump will "not be making an announcement regarding that agreement until after he returns from the G7," said White House spokesman Sean Spicer today, referring to a meeting in Sicily that ends May 27.
Despite hardline pre-election rhetoric against the deal, Trump's inner circle has been tasked with providing the president with a range of policy options.
The group includes Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, White House strategist Steve Bannon, Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt, as well as Trump's daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner.
Administration officials said the crunch sit-down may now take place next week, before Trump departs for a bumper first foreign trip that will take in Saudi Arabia, Israel, the Vatican and Brussels before ending in Sicily.
"The president wants to make sure he has an opportunity to continue to meet with his team to create the best strategy for this country going forward," said Spicer.
One option said to be under consideration is full withdrawal from the Paris accord, fulfilling Trump's campaign promise to "cancel" the deal as president.
Bannon and Pruitt are said to be among those arguing for a tough line, rejecting global agreements they believe tie the hands of US industry.
Pruitt, the US government's leading environmental official, has rejected the scientific consensus that humans are the "primary contributor" to global warming.
Ivanka Trump has meanwhile become a talisman for those who believe she can be a moderating influence on her father.
But her stance on the Paris accord and her influence inside the cut-throat world of White House politics are unclear.

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