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There's Some Serious Messy Drama After Australia's PM Cropped Vietnam's President Out Of A Photo

I'm a messy bitch who lives for political drama.

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Malcolm Turnbull — Australia's prime minister — loves a selfie. Probably because he thinks (or has been told) that it makes him look Young, Wild and Free. Or maybe just because he likes taking photos of himself. Regardless, the dude does it a whole bunch.

Thanks to the team at Sydney Trains for this morning's travels and of course what would it be without a few selfies

This past weekend at the APEC conference in Vietnam Turnbull took one of his famous selfies. Later in the day he tweeted it: a photo of himself, Chinese president Xi Jinping, and US president Donald Trump.

Catching up with @realDonaldTrump & President Xi at #APEC2017; working together to secure our region’s safety & pro…

The responses were mixed:

@TurnbullMalcolm @realDonaldTrump To think I once thought you might be worthy of my vote. Thank god it was a moment…

@sarahmacgirl @TurnbullMalcolm @realDonaldTrump He looks a bit like a groupie here though..

However everything took a turn when it was revealed that there was one more person who had posed for the selfie, only to be cropped out: Vietnamese president Tran Dai Quang. Vietnam APEC.

@TurnbullMalcolm What about the Vietnam’s leader? 😂😂

You can even see his shoulder in Turnbull's pic:

Poor ol' Dai Quang :(

Putting Turnbull's tweet into Twitter myself, it's clear that the PM had PLENTY of space to mention the Vietnamese president — or at the very least hand him an @. How messy.

It's not entirely clear why Turnbull chose to crop out the Vietnamese president (his office has not yet responded to a request for comment) but there are a whole range of possibilities.


Maybe after the selfie was taken Turnbull showed the photo to his fellow world leaders and Dai Quang asked to be cropped out.


Maybe the phone did that weird thing when you take a photo with the front camera where it switches around your face so it looks like what everyone else sees IRL and not what you see in the mirror every day. That can be confronting.


Maybe Dai Quang didn't like how he looked in the selfie. We've all been there.


Whatever reason, it doesn't matter. Sadness about the Vietnam president's snub went viral in his home country yesterday.

This is making the rounds on Vietnamese social media.

People were kinda pissed with Turnbull for cropping Dai Quang.

@TurnbullMalcolm @realDonaldTrump Dear mr. prime minister, such a low act for a representative of Australia, croppi…

@TurnbullMalcolm @realDonaldTrump WTF why why ???? MY PRESIDENT VIETNAM 😡😡😡😡

@TurnbullMalcolm @realDonaldTrump you cropped our president!

@TurnbullMalcolm @realDonaldTrump Bit rude taking selfie @TurnbullMalcolm in Vietnam then editing the Vietnamese P…

Looks like ol' Malc has found himself in the middle of some serious political world leader friendship drama, which is honestly a vibe I can get around. Will be tuning in again.


Brad Esposito is a news reporter for BuzzFeed and is based in Sydney, Australia.

Contact Brad Esposito at

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