U.S. Vice President Mike Pence arrives for the swearing in ceremony of Judge Neil Gorsuch as an Associate Supreme Court Justice in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, U.S., April 10, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
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Washington has billed Vice President Mike Pence's visit to Indonesia next week as a booster for the Strategic Partnership between the world's second- and third-largest democracies, but a raft of bilateral tensions could sap the goodwill from his trip.Pence's counterpart in the world's most populous Muslim country has voiced worries about U.S. President Donald Trump's immigration policy, which critics say is biased against Muslims, and about his "America First" mantra on trade and investment.Indonesia is one of 16 countries against which the United States runs a trade deficit that will be investigated by the Trump administration for possible trade abuses.Despite the strains, the government official said Indonesia would be careful to start its relationship with the Trump administration on the right foot.U.S. ambassador to Indonesia, Joseph R. Donovan Jr, said in a statement last week that Pence's visit reflected a continued commitment to that partnership, would deepen economic engagement and boost regional security cooperation.
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