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Trump risks snub ahead of UK visit by refusing to back Theresa May

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'The UK's in turmoil... Meeting Putin might be easier!' Donald Trump risks snub row with extraordinary comments ahead of visit to UK (but insists Boris is his FRIEND)

  • Donald Trump has risked diplomatic incident ahead of visit to the UK this week
  • US president heaped praise on his 'friend' Boris Johnson after his resignation
  • Mr Trump said it was 'up to the people' whether Theresa May stayed on as PM 

By James Tapsfield, Political Editor For Mailonline

Published: 07:48 EDT, 10 July 2018 | Updated: 10:22 EDT, 10 July 2018

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Donald Trump risked sparking a diplomatic incident today ahead of his visit to the UK by saying the country is 'in turmoil' and his showdown with Vladimir Putin will be easier than meeting Theresa May. 

The US president also heaped praise on his 'friend' Boris Johnson - who dramatically resigned from government yesterday over Brexit - and suggested he could meet him during the trip.  

The extraordinary comments come just days before he is due to fly into Britain for a long-awaited working visit.

Speaking to the media alongside First Lady Melania today before leaving the US, Donald Trump said it was 'up to the people of Britain' to decide whether Mrs May stayed on as PM

There are already fears of tensions, after he publicly clashed with Mrs May (pictured in London today) over criticism of crime levels in London, the performance of the NHS, and retweeting posts from a far-right group
There are already fears of tensions, after he publicly clashed with Mrs May (pictured in London today) over criticism of crime levels in London, the performance of the NHS, and retweeting posts from a far-right group

There are already fears of tensions, after he publicly clashed with Mrs May (pictured in London today) over criticism of crime levels in London, the performance of the NHS, and retweeting posts from a far-right group

President Trump and Russia's President Vladimir pictured in Danang, Vietnam in November, 2017.  Trump risked sparking a diplomatic incident today by saying the UK is 'in turmoil' and his showdown with Vladimir Putin will be easier than meeting Theresa May
President Trump and Russia's President Vladimir pictured in Danang, Vietnam in November, 2017.  Trump risked sparking a diplomatic incident today by saying the UK is 'in turmoil' and his showdown with Vladimir Putin will be easier than meeting Theresa May

President Trump and Russia's President Vladimir pictured in Danang, Vietnam in November, 2017.  Trump risked sparking a diplomatic incident today by saying the UK is 'in turmoil' and his showdown with Vladimir Putin will be easier than meeting Theresa May

There are already fears of tensions, after he publicly clashed with Mrs May over criticism of crime levels in London, the performance of the NHS, and retweeting posts from a far-right group.

Americans in UK warned to 'keep a low profile' during Trump's visit to Britain

Americans living in Britain have been warned to 'keep a low profile' during Donald Trump's visit to avoid being caught up in 'violent' protests.

The U.S. Embassy issued the advice on Tuesday ahead of the President's arrival on Thursday for talks with a Prime Minister Theresa May.

Embassy staff said 'numerous demonstrations' were planned for Thursday to Saturday with the majority around central London on Friday.

Americans were advised to 'keep a low profile', 'be aware of your surroundings', and 'monitor local media' during Trump's visit.

'Exercise caution if unexpectedly in the vicinity of large gatherings that may become violent,' it said. 

  Tens of thousands are expected to take to the streets in protest of Trump's policies but there is no indication they will be anything but peaceful.

Downing Street sources insisted they were 'relaxed' about the intervention, pointing out that Mr Trump also stressed his 'very good' relations with Mrs May.

But the jibes will fuel concerns that the visit will be a diplomatic minefield. 

Speaking to journalists as he set off for Europe, Mr Trump said there were a 'lot of things' going on in the UK at the moment and the country seemed to be 'somewhat in turmoil'.

'The UK certainly has a lot of things going on,' he said.  

'Boris Johnson's a friend of mine. He's been very, very nice to me. Very supportive. 

'And maybe we'll speak to him when I get over there. 

'I like Boris Johnson. I've always liked him.' 

Asked by DailyMail.com whether Mrs May should continue as PM, Mr Trump said 'that is up to the people'.

However, he added that he had a 'very good relationship' with Mrs May. 

Mr Trump joked that his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin might be the 'easiest' leg of his trip to Europe.

'So I have Nato, I have the UK - that's a situation with turmoil. And I have Putin. Frankly, Putin may be the easiest of all.' 

Mr Trump said Boris Johnson (pictured  leaving his London home today) was a 'friend' and suggested he could meet up with him in the UK
Mr Trump said Boris Johnson (pictured  leaving his London home today) was a 'friend' and suggested he could meet up with him in the UK

Mr Trump said Boris Johnson (pictured  leaving his London home today) was a 'friend' and suggested he could meet up with him in the UK

The US president will meet Mrs May at her Chequers country residence (pictured) on Friday rather than in Downing Street
The US president will meet Mrs May at her Chequers country residence (pictured) on Friday rather than in Downing Street

The US president will meet Mrs May at her Chequers country residence (pictured) on Friday rather than in Downing Street

On his trip to Europe, he added: 'It's going to be an interesting time in the UK and an interesting time at Nato. We will work it out and all countries will be happy. 

'We do have a lot of allies. 

'But we cannot be taken advantage of. We're being taken advantage of by the European Union. We spend 75 per cent on Nato and frankly, it helps them more than it helps us.' 

Labour MP Madeleine Moon, a champion of anti-Brexit group Best for Britain, said Mr Trump's remarks showed the dangers of relying on the US.

'This is a wake up call and a look into the future we face if Brexit goes ahead,' she said. 

'We have a tight relationship with our allies in the EU, yet this government is tearing us away from them just as Trump is making a mockery of our so-called special relationship.'  

Mr Trump will not make any public appearances in London when he comes to the UK next week - amid a massive security operation.

The US president and First Lady Melania will touch down in Britain on Thursday for his first visit since entering the White House.

Huge protests have been threatened that could see 50,000 take to the streets of the capital, while a big orange 'Baby Trump' blimp has been given permission to fly. 

The bill for the American leader's three-day trip is expected to be around £30million as 10,000 police officers are deployed to keep the US commander-in-chief from trouble. 

Revealed - full details of Trump's UK trip: US president won't make ANY public appearances in London 

Donald Trump will not make any public appearances in London when he comes to the UK this week - amid a massive security operation.

The US president and First Lady Melania will touch down in Britain on Thursday for his first visit since entering the White House.

Huge protests have been threatened that could see 50,000 take to the streets of the capital, while a big orange 'Baby Trump' blimp has been given permission to fly. 

The bill for the American leader's three-day trip is expected to be around £30million as 10,000 police officers are deployed to keep the US commander-in-chief from trouble. 

Downing Street has revealed some details about the visit by Donald Trump and the First Lady to the UK this week
Downing Street has revealed some details about the visit by Donald Trump and the First Lady to the UK this week

Downing Street has revealed some details about the visit by Donald Trump and the First Lady to the UK this week

Sunbathers were given the shock of their lives on Monday afternoon as two v-22 Ospreys flew over Regent's Park as part of drills, sending grass and debris flying through the air
Sunbathers were given the shock of their lives on Monday afternoon as two v-22 Ospreys flew over Regent's Park as part of drills, sending grass and debris flying through the air

Sunbathers were given the shock of their lives on Monday afternoon as two v-22 Ospreys flew over Regent's Park as part of drills, sending grass and debris flying through the air

Trump's £1.2 million Cadillac 'The Beast' has been flown over in one of the world's largest military planes - the Super Galaxy C5.   

Meanwhile US Navy carrier, the gigantic USS Harry S Truman, will dock in the south coast as back up. 

The details of the long-awaited visit issued by Downing Street last week confirm that Mr Trump will spend only minimal time in London.

Instead he will be feted by Mrs May at a dinner for business leaders being held on Thursday night at Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, the ancestral home of his hero Winston Churchill.

The next day he will have tea with the Queen at Windsor Castle and talks with the Prime Minister at her country retreat, Chequers.

Work has begun to set up a £30million 'ring of steel' around Regent's Park, where the US President will stay, in anticipation of widespread protests against the trip
Work has begun to set up a £30million 'ring of steel' around Regent's Park, where the US President will stay, in anticipation of widespread protests against the trip

Work has begun to set up a £30million 'ring of steel' around Regent's Park, where the US President will stay, in anticipation of widespread protests against the trip

Mrs Trump, meanwhile, will be given her own sightseeing tour, hosted by Theresa May's husband Philip.

It has also emerged that Mr Trump will spend the majority of his three-day trip in Scotland, where his mother was born and where he owns two golf courses. 

Downing Street denied the itinerary was deliberately designed to shield Mr Trump from the public.

A spokesman pointed out that several other leading figures had been hosted at Chequers in the past, including US presidents Richard Nixon and George W Bush, and, last year, French President Emmanuel Macron.

 

 

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By Shawn Arnette 10/07/2018 10:22:00