President Trump said late Thursday that he had cancelled a trip to London because of the cost and “off location” of the new United States Embassy in the city, where he had been expected to face protests.
Nearly a year ago, Mr. Trump accepted an invitation to visit from Queen Elizabeth II, which was extended by Prime Minister Theresa May of Britain while she was in Washington shortly after Mr. Trump’s inauguration.
That announcement set off a year of debate in Britain, where Mr. Trump is unpopular, and the timing of the visit was continually pushed back. British newspapers cited concerns about protests during a visit as officials tried to gauge how much pomp should greet Mr. Trump.
Last month the United States ambassador to Britain, Woody Johnson, said that while no trip had been formally announced, he hoped Mr. Trump would visit in early 2018 and dedicate the new embassy.
On Thursday night, the president took to his favourite medium, Twitter, and announced that he had cancelled his trip because he was unhappy with the new building.
Mr. Trump’s British critics responded with jeers, saying the president was afraid of the reception he would get in Britain. Read more
Ed Miliband, the former Labour Party leader, responded to Mr. Trump’s announcement on Twitter, saying: “Nope. It’s because nobody wanted you to come. And you got the message.”
Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, said the president’s tweet made clear that it had been a mistake for Mrs. May to move so quickly to extend the invitation to Mr. Trump last year. “It appears that President Trump got the message from the many Londoners who love and admire America and Americans but find his policies and actions the polar opposite of our city’s values of inclusion, diversity and tolerance,” he tweeted. Read more