04/10/2018 10:37 EDT | Updated 04/10/2018 10:37 EDT

Donald Trump Won't Attend Summit Of The Americas

Vice-president Mike Pence will go in his stead.

Carlos Barria/Reuters
President Donald Trump, seen during a cabinet meeting at the White House on Monday, has scrapped plans to travel to Peru and Colombia on Friday.

President Donald Trump has scrapped plans to travel to Peru and Colombia on Friday, choosing to remain in the U.S. to oversee the American response to a suspected chemical attack in Syria.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced the news in a statement on Tuesday morning.

"President Trump will not attend the 8th Summit of the Americas in Lima, Peru or travel to Bogota, Colombia as originally scheduled," Sanders said. "At the President's request, the Vice President will travel in his stead."

Trump has said that a military response to the recent attack near Damascus, which left at least 49 people dead, is not off the table.

"Everybody's going to pay a price," he said ahead of a Cabinet meeting on Monday.

Trump's trip this week was expected to be especially tense for the president, due to his past disparagement of Latin American countries over immigration, narcotics and trade.

Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Syrian children receive medical treatment after a suspected poisonous gas attack in Damascus on April 7.

Mexican President Peña Nieto on Monday ordered his cabinet to review his country's relationship with the U.S., including border security, migration, trade and drug gangs.

The White House's decision to send Vice President Mike Pence in Trump's place also comes as the president deals with the FBI's raid of his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, on Monday.

Trump on Tuesday claimed the search is part of a "total witch hunt" and that "attorney-client privilege is dead."

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