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Trump signs USD 716 billion defense bill with diluted China measures

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New York: US President Donald Trump has signed a USD 716 billion defense policy bill which authorises military spending and includes watered-down controls on US government contracts with China’s ZTE Corp and Huawei Technologies Co Ltd.

Trump signed the law at the US Army’s Fort Drum base in upstate New York on his way back to Washington after a 12-day working vacation at his golf club in New Jersey.

The bill was named for one of Trump’s political critics, the ailing US Senator John McCain of Arizona, but he did not mention McCain’s name.

Trump later made a reference to McCain at a political fund-raiser in Utica, New York, knocking him – as Trump does repeatedly – for voting against a bill to repeal parts of President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare reform law last year.

Even though Trump said the bill “is the most significant investment in our military and our war-fighters in modern history,” Obama’s first three defense budgets were larger, when adjusted for inflation, according to Todd Harrison at the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.

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