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Trump Abandons Protocol, Gives Out Cellphone Number to World Leaders

President Donald Trump is ditching protocol by giving out his cell phone number to world leaders, telling them to call him directly, reports the Associated Press.

So far, Trump has reportedly given his number to leaders in Canada, Mexico, and France.

The AP reported that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President Emmanuel Macron have Trump’s number – and Trudeau has already called the U.S. president. A French official refused to say whether Macron would take advantage of the direct line to Trump.

Reports had already circulated last week about Trump giving Macron his cell number.

Trump’s unconventional methods has once again sparked some concern and outrage over the matter. The AP outlines some of the security concerns that come with this matter:

The notion of world leaders calling each other up via cellphone may seem unremarkable in the modern, mobile world. But in the diplomatic arena, where leader-to-leader calls are highly orchestrated affairs, it is another notable breach of protocol for a president who has expressed distrust of official channels. The formalities and discipline of diplomacy have been a rough fit for Trump — who, before taking office, was long easily accessible by cellphone and viewed himself as freewheeling, impulsive dealmaker.

Presidents generally place calls on one of several secure phone lines, including those in the White House Situation Room, the Oval Office or the presidential limousine. Even if Trump uses his government-issued cellphone, his calls are vulnerable to eavesdropping, particularly from foreign governments, national security experts say.

“If you are speaking on an open line, then it’s an open line, meaning those who have the ability to monitor those conversations are doing so,” said Derek Chollet, a former Pentagon adviser and National Security Council official now at the German Marshall Fund of the United States.

There were similar reactions on social media:

The AP also drew comparisons to Trump’s cell phone, an unsecured line of communication, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email server.

But this latest revelation is unlikely to deter Trump supporters, who’ve praised the Republican for his unconventional leadership style.