Donald Trump Cancels U.K. Trip Over Fears of Mass Protests
Reeling over widespread condemnation of his vulgar comments about Haiti and African countries, the president tweeted that he wouldn't now open the new U.S. embassy in London.
Donald Trump announced on Twitter that he will not visit the U.K. to open the new U.S. embassy in London, claiming that he was not a "fan" of the $1.2 billion complex as it was 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. Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2018
Despite the president's tweet, the Guardian is reporting that Trump canceled the trip amid fears of massive protests when he touched down in London. (Also, the decision to sell the Grosvenor Square embassy building was made by the George W. Bush administration.)
British Prime Minister Theresa May invited Trump to an official state visit soon after he was elected, but a huge backlash in the U.K. with plans for organized protests and a plan by MPs to refuse to let the president address Parliament led to those plans being postponed.
The Guardian reports that the British and American governments hoped that Trump could do a smaller-scale visit and officially open the new U.S. embassy, but the very real prospect of mass protest, likely to be given further impetus by Trump's "shithole" comments, again derailed those plans.
Instead of Trump, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will travel to London and open the embassy, which relocated to Nine Elms in South London from its former home in the heart of plush Mayfair.