Apr.27 - U.S. President Barack Obama arrives for a working lunch with Prime Minister Najib Razak of Malaysia after visiting a mosque. Sarah Toms reports.
With a handshake and a smile, Malaysia and the US enter a new phase in their relationship. U.S. President Barack Obama is the first serving American leader to visit this predominantly Muslim nation in decades. During his two day visit, Obama will have much to discuss with his Malaysian counterpart Najib Razak. Talks with Razak are expected to focus on trade, defense and maritime security. But the US president will have a difficult task getting Kuala Lumpur to sign his Trans-Pacific Partnership -- free trade deal with 10 other nations. The trade deal is intended to counter China's growing economic influence in the region but Malaysia is a close trading partner of China and has opposed parts of the deal. During the two-day visit, which follows stops in Japan and South Korea, Obama visited the National Mosque of Malaysia, removing his shoes in keeping with protocol. He stopped for a few moments in a prayer room. Obama will leave Malaysia on Monday for the Philippines, where he will spend two days before returning to Washington.