Obama not to be accompanied by wife, daughters on Asian trip: Gibbs

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Washington, Mar. 13 (ANI): White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs has confirmed that President Barack Obama will delay his visit to Asia, and he won't be accompanied by wife Michelle and daughters Malia and Sasha.

According to Gibbs' announcement on Twitter, Michelle, Malia and Sasha would no longer join Obama on his trip to Indonesia, where he lived as a boy for four years with his beloved late mother.

"The president will delay leaving for Indonesia and Australia -- will now leave Sunday-the first lady and the girls will not be on the trip," The Australian quoted Gibbs, as saying.

Earlier, it was revealed that Obama has decided to stay in Washington to twist arms in Congress for health care reforms - the centrepiece of his domestic policies.

The trip now figures to be an even faster sprint through Indonesia and Australia than previously scheduled. And the fact that he must leave his daughters at home, may take the gloss off the trip for Obama and disappoint his hosts.

Gibbs, however, said that there had never been plans for the president to visit his old school or the house where he lived when he was in Jakarta as a boy between 1967 and 1971.

"The United States has been absent from the Asia Pacific region, we can't lead in this region of the world without strong bilateral relationships with Indonesia and Australia," Gibbs said.

The president is also due to stop in the Pacific Ocean island of Guam, an unincorporated US territory, on the way to Asia, to see American troops. (ANI)

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