Donald Trump state visit: Timing now in doubt after President 'voices protest fears'

The President does not want to visit the UK until the public supports him, sources say

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The Independent US

Donald Trump has reportedly told Theresa May that he does not want to visit the UK soon for fear of large-scale protests against him.

Ms May invited Mr Trump to Britain seven days after his inauguration. Now he apparently wants to wait until the British public supports him coming.

The US President made the admission in a recent phone call to the Prime Minister, a Downing Street adviser who was present for the call told The Guardian. The aide said Ms May seemed surprised. 

Mr Trump – never a favourite among British voters – stoked outcry in recent weeks for attacking London Mayor Sadiq Khan in the wake of terrorist attacks in the city.

The President ridiculed Mr Khan’s calls for calm, and later condemned the Mayor’s “pathetic excuse” for his statements.

The comments drove even Ms May to say that Mr Trump was “wrong”. Some MPs – and Mr Khan himself – suggested she cancel Mr Trump’s visit to the UK.

“Show some bottle please PM,” David Lammy, senior Labour MP, tweeted. “Cancel the state visit and tell Trump where to get off.”

Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour leader, has also expressed his support for cancelling the trip.

A spokesperson for Ms May, however, told Reuters that “the Queen extended an invitation to President Trump to visit the UK and there is no change to those plans”.

British police stopped sharing intelligence with the US about the Manchester terrorist attack after photos of the investigation were leaked to the media.

The Foreign Office was also reportedly upset with Mr Trump’s decision to remove the US from the Paris climate agreement.

Mr Trump did not visit the UK on his first foreign trip as President, choosing instead to visit Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the Vatican. He also attended summits in Italy and Belgium. The White House recently announced that his next foreign trip will include a visit Poland.

Businessman Woody Johnson has been named as the new US ambassador to the UK, but the President has yet to formally nominate him.

The Independent has contacted the White House for comment.

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