Two years after UK Prime Minister Theresa May extended the invitation, US President Donald Trump is in UK for his first state visit.
LATEST FROM TRUMP’S STATE VISIT
London Mayor tags Trump as Childish
In return of US President Trump calling Sadiq Khan a ‘stone-cold loser’, Khan said he wasn’t offended by the remark. Khan said that Trump was expected to behave more like a role model.
“This is the sort of behaviour I would expect from an 11-year-old” London Mayor Khan remarked on Trump calling him a stone-cold loser.
He then said he felt it foolish to respond to indulge in childish tweets and name-calling.
On the anti-Trump protests around London, Khan said the protesters have the right to protest, as long as its peaceful. And on the Trade Agreement that is being desperately pursued by UK, Khan said it isn’t wise to trust Trump’s guarantees.
“Putting all your eggs in the Donald Trump basket is unwise. His mood changes from hour to hour,” said Khan on the possibility of the Trade Agreement.
Possibility of a deal in near future unlikely
Although President Trump was able to incite humour with his “Stick around, let’s do this deal,” suggestion to PM Theresa May, a deal such as is being talked about is still a far way from reality.
A Trade Deal between US and UK will be a long-drawn formulation heavily influenced by political developments and foreign policy changes.
Firstly, formal discussions on a trade deal can can take years to be completed and political upsets and foreign policy changes with often come as roadblocks.
Currently, UK finds in EU its top trading partner accounting to almost 46% of its trade, followed by the US at 18.6% of total UK trade.
The White House mentioned yesterday that President Trump is eager to reinforce the economic ties between the allies through a ‘substantial, very fair and ambitious’ new trade agreement.
But n number of demands from the confrontational Trump administration might be straight rejections for the UK.
What is the First Lady doing today?
US First Lady is with the President at Downing Street.
Melania Trump is attending a garden tea party hosted by PM May’s husband Philip while President Trump conducts meetings.
Philip May, who is the head of UK PM Theresa May will host Melania Trump for tea and also give her a tour of Downing Street and join her for tea.
Trump-May Breakfast roundtable
Prime Minister May and President Trump’s breakfast roundtable with business leaders from UK and US is underway.
“Stick around. Let’s do this deal.” – Trump told May at the breakfast table.
Discussing possibilities of Trade agreement between UK and US, Trump addressed the matter of resignation of PM May. Trump congratulated Theresa May for having done job and asked her to stick around and do the deal.
The comment made the breakfast table erupt with laughter.
May’s opening of discussions emphasized on the need for a ‘bilateral trade agreement’ between the allies. British government is desperate for such a deal with the US as it ponders to formulate life after Brexit. May opined there are huge opportunities to seize.
Trump took the opportunity to exemplified US role in trade partnerships. Trump said: “I very much appreciate the relationship we’ve had … It’s been outstanding — I guess some people know that, some people don’t, but you and I know it. We are your largest partner, Europe our largest partner, a lot of people don’t know that.”
Furthermore, Trump added that the opportunity for the allies is ‘tremendously enlarge’ and they should have ‘a very substantial trade deal.’
Winston Churchill-theme of gifts for Trump
Trump is set to receive his second Churchill-themed gift of the visit after the Queen presented him the first edition of one of the books written by Winston Churchill on the Second World War.
UK PM Theresa May will gift Trump a copy of Winston Churchill’s personal draft of the post- World War 2 Atlantic Charter.
British PM Theresa May, who is set to leave office at the end of the week, will present US President a copy of Winston Churchill’s personal draft of the Atlantic Charter.
The document from 1941 maps out Allied aspirations for peace and world structure post-World War 2. The charter was co-formulated by then UK PM Winston Churchill and US President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Protesters are ready with Props
Protesters will haunt Trump’s visit following the US President’s schedule for the day. Among what’s planned it a ‘Diaper-clad baby’ blimp of Trump, and a 16 foot robot of Trump sitting on a toilet seat.
The main rally will kick off from Trafalgar Square from 11 am. Protesters will head towards Downing Street where Trump will be meeting PM Theresa May.
Among other features of the protest are a 16-foot robot version of Trump sitting on the toilet. The protest organizers are aiming to rival demonstrations that took place during Trump’s ‘working visit’ in 2018.
In a rhetorical tweet, the US President mentioned on Monday evening that there’s a tremendous crowd of well-wishers and people that love our Country, but he hadn’t seen any protests yet.
Trump’s Schedule for Today
President Trump is scheduled to start from his residential accommodation at Winfield House and fly in a helicopter to Buckingham Palace.
Thereafter, Trump will head off to a business round-table at the St. James Palace; on his way to the UK PM May’s residence at 10 Downing Street.
In the afternoon, President Trump and Prime Minister May will hold bilateral talks, followed by a ‘working lunch’ and a press conference.
Thereafter, the President and First Lady Melania will take a tour of the Churchill War Room. Next up will be exchange of greetings with Prince Charles and Duchess of Cornwall.
President Trump will close the day by participating in a reciprocal dinner with a presentation of guests and a guest book signing. For a complete table of the US President’s schedule for the day, visit here.
A ‘mercurial’ 3 day spectacle
Scheduled from June 3 to June 5, the visit will have ceremonial dinners and felicitations between high-level talks.
Unsurprisingly, Trump’s visit will not be short on drama quotient.
Both exiting PM May’s initial invitation (saw 1.8 million people sign a protest petition); and his visit now has been disproved by many in England.
Tuesday will see tens of thousands of people converge at the Trafalgar Square in London to protest against Trump – a symbol of far right for many.
What’s in Store?
Queen Elizabeth greeted President Trump and stood beside him during the guard of honour yesterday. The Queen will partake in a number of functions as part of the ceremonial state visit – a formal welcome at Horse Guard’s Parade, lunch and dinner at Buckingham Palace.
Trump, along with First Lady Melania Trump, will be part of a ceremony that marks the 75th anniversary of D-Day at the historic naval city of Portsmouth which was an embarkation site in the famous World War II operation.
Trump will hold a number of formal as well expected informal meetings. He has a private audience scheduled with the Queen as well as a formal meeting with Theresa May.
After the UK Visit, Trump who also has a personal invitation from French President Emmanuel Macron, will travel to France and visit Normandy – another significant D-Day heritage site, before holding bilateral talks.
This isn’t President Trump’s first state visit to the UK – he made a ‘working visit’ in July 2018 – which had also prompted huge protests in central London, similar to what will be witnessed today.