White House: Trump intends to tweet in China

White House: Trump intends to tweet in China
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpProgressive group launches M pro-Biden ad buy targeting young voters Ilhan Omar: GOP response to calls for police reform 'was vicious' White House considers sweeping travel ban on members, families of the Chinese Communist Party: report MORE has every intention of tweeting while he's in China, "so long as he can access his Twitter account," a senior administration official said Wednesday.

"The president will tweet whenever he wants," the official told reporters aboard Air Force One, as Trump headed to Beijing for the third leg of his 11-day trip across Asia. "That's his way of communicating directly with the American people."

Twitter and other Western social media platforms are blocked in China, where the government maintains a tight grip on internet access.

Foreigners visiting the country are generally able to get around the ban, however, either by using a virtual private network or other data-roaming services. And the White House would not have to connect Trump's phone to any Chinese services to get his tweets out.

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"I'm sure we've got the gear aboard this airplane to allow that to happen," the official said of the possibility of Trump tweeting. "But it is noteworthy that none of the major Western platforms for social media are even allowed to operate in China."

Even as he travels across Asia, Trump has still used Twitter to provide updates on his meetings with world leaders and chime in on news back in the U.S.

In a tweet shortly after Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam (D) was declared the winner of Virginia's gubernatorial election Tuesday night, for example, the president took to the social media site to place blame on Republican Ed Gillespie for his defeat.

And before that, Trump tweeted his condolences to the victims of a mass shooting at a Texas church.