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President Donald Trump talks of UK 'turmoil' ahead of visit


The UK is in "turmoil" and "it is up to the people" whether Theresa May stays as prime minister, Donald Trump has said ahead of his first visit to the country as US President, BBC reported.

Mr Trump told reporters before leaving Washington there were "a lot of things going on" in the UK at the moment.

He said he got on well with Mrs May and had "always liked" Boris Johnson, who quit as foreign secretary on Monday.

Mr Trump arrives on Thursday after attending the Nato summit.

The US President is set to arrive in the UK on the same day as the government publishes its White Paper setting out in more detail Mrs May's controversial offer to the EU on future relations after Brexit.

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Both Mr Johnson and former Brexit Secretary David Davis, who has also quit, have expressed fears it will tie the UK too closely to the EU and make it harder to do trade deals with countries like the US.

The US President has previously expressed sympathy for Brexit and said he wanted to do a quick trade deal with the UK once it leaves the EU - which is due to take place on 29 March, 2019.

Asked about his forthcoming visit, Mr Trump referred to the turbulence of the past 48 hours, which has prompted speculation about Theresa May's future as leader.

"It is going to be an interesting time in the UK and an interesting time at Nato," he told reporters on the lawn of the White House. "We will work it out and all countries will be happy.

"So I have Nato, I have the UK - that's a situation with turmoil."

Mr Trump, who has called on other Nato members to pay more for their own defence, joked that his meeting with Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Helsinki on Monday "may be the easiest of all".

Asked about Mrs May's future, he said it was a matter for the British people. "I get along with her very well. I have a very good relationship. That's certainly up to the people, not up to me."

As for Boris Johnson - seen by many as a potential future challenger to Mrs May - Mr Trump said he was a "friend of mine" and he hoped he might find time to speak to him during his visit.

"He's been very, very nice to me, very supportive. I like Boris Johnson, I've always liked him."

The ex-foreign secretary, who warned in his resignation letter on Monday that the "Brexit dream was dying", has spoken of his "increasing admiration" for Mr Trump and speculated about what Brexit negotiations would be like if he was in charge.

During his visit, Mr Trump will hold talks with Theresa May, who will also host a dinner for him at Blenheim Palace. He is also due to have tea with The Queen at Windsor Castle.

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Protests are expected against Mr Trump, whose policies - including a travel ban on a number of predominantly Muslim countries, the detention of child migrants on the US-Mexico border and the imposition of tariffs on EU steel and aluminium exports - have all been criticised by the UK.

Mrs May has insisted the UK's strategic and historic links with the US mean hosting its US president is essential, although making clear where the UK disagrees with him.

After being appointed foreign secretary on Monday, Jeremy Hunt said the UK would be a "dependable ally, a country that stands up for the values that matter to the people of this country and will be a strong and confident voice in the world".

Melania, 48, was first seen in Washington, D.C. in the morning, wearing $795 beige and red shoes by the famed French designer as she and her husband, 72, walked across the South Lawn of the White House to board Marine One.

Later in the day, Melania was photographed stepping off Air Force One in Melsbroek, Belgium, after changing her entire outfit — shoes included — on the presidential plane, Daily Mail reported.

Culled from BBC

My view: It's baffling how Trump doesn't criticize president Putin, maybe they've got lots of detail about President Trump.