People like me a lot, says President in UK

President Donald Trump arrived in"hot spot" Britain on Thursday after casting doubt on Prime Minister Theresa May's plans for leaving the EU and with protests planned across the country where he says the people like him a lot.

By Reuters in London
  • Published 13.07.18
  •  
President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are greeted by an honour guard at Stansted Airport, north of London, on Thursday. (AFP)

London: President Donald Trump arrived in"hot spot" Britain on Thursday after casting doubt on Prime Minister Theresa May's plans for leaving the EU and with protests planned across the country where he says the people like him a lot.

After a Nato summit where he provoked a crisis session to force allies to raise their defence spending, Trump landed in Britain having described the closest US ally in Europe as being in turmoil over Brexit.

May hopes Trump, who arrived at Stansted airport from Brussels, will help accelerate a future free trade deal, though his public comments on Brexit have cast a shadow over the visit.

The trip coincides with a tumultuous week for May after two senior ministers resigned in protest at her plans for trade with the EU after Britain leaves next March.

That business-friendly Brexit proposal was agreed by her cabinet only last Friday after two years of wrangling since Britons voted to leave the bloc in a 2016 referendum.

"I'm going to a pretty hot spot right now, right? With a lot of resignations," Trump told a news conference at the Nato summit in Brussels.

"The people voted to break it up, so I imagine that's what they'll do. But maybe they're taking a little bit of a different route, so I don't know if that's what they voted for."

Asked about Trump's comments, May said: "We're delivering on the vote of the British people to take back control of our money, our laws and our borders."

Trump has long been a Brexit supporter and has expressed enthusiasm for a wide-ranging trade deal with Britain after Brexit, something heralded by eurosceptics as being one of the great benefits of exiting the bloc.

Despite the welcome from May, many Britons are opposed to Trump's visit.

"I think they like me a lot in the UK," Trump said in Brussels. "I think they agree with me on immigration. I'm very strong on immigration."