President Trump Cancels Visit to the UK
LONDON—U.S. President Donald Trump canceled a trip to London scheduled for next month to open a new embassy, because he considers the embassy’s relocation a “bad deal.”
“Reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for “peanuts,” only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars,” Trump said in a tweet late on Thursday.
“Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!” Trump said.
Reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for “peanuts,” only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars. Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2018
The decision to acquire a new London embassy site on the south bank of the Thames was announced in 2008 under George W. Bush along with the plans to put the Grosvenor Square site in Mayfair up for sale.
A pillar of Britain’s foreign policy since World War Two, the so-called “special relationship” with Washington has taken on added importance as Britain prepares to leave the European Union in 2019 and seeks new major trade deals.
May was the first foreign leader to visit Trump after his inauguration in January last year, and they were filmed emerging from the White House holding hands. She later said Trump took her hand in a gentlemanly gesture as they walked down a ramp.
During that trip a year ago, May extended an invitation to make a state visit—which includes pomp, pageantry and a formal banquet with Queen Elizabeth—by the end of 2017.
That state visit, which is different to his now canceled working trip, has not yet taken place, though British officials insist it has not been canceled.
By Guy Faulconbridge; Additional reporting by Kanishka Singh; Editing by Robin Pomeroy
The Epoch Times contributed to this report