US President Donald Trump has reportedly cancelled a plan to inaugurate the new US embassy in London next month, according to reports from the British media.
Trump allegedly called off the plan due to his concern of not receiving a warm welcome in the United Kingdom, the Independent claimed, adding that the American head of state will instead send Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Nevertheless, the White House has not yet issued a comment on the reports.
Trump had been due to arrive in London for the new £750-million embassy’s opening but is believed to have abandoned the idea as he feels unhappy about the visit’s scale, the arrangements made, the lack of “bells and whistles” surrounding the event, and the fact he would not be able to meet Queen Elizabeth.
He was reportedly due to meet Prime Minister Theresa May at No. 10 Downing Street, with February 26 and 27 provisionally scheduled in the presidential diary.
The decision is in contrast to the comments made by Woody Johnson — the US Ambassador to the UK — at the last year end that Trump was planning to visit Britain in 2018 as well as May’s comments last week that he “will be coming to this country”.
In a controversial move, May had extended the offer of a state visit when she became the first world leader to meet Trump in the White House following his inauguration last year.
Trump has since indicated his unwillingness to take the trip amid concerns that he would face mass demonstrations.
Last month, Jeremy Corbyn — the leader of the Labour Party — called his supporters to protest and send Trump a “clear message” that he was not welcome in the UK.
The opposition to his visit meant the original plan for an official state visit — which would include a chance to meet the Queen — was lowered to just a “working visit” that carries much less importance.
Trump and May had a fall out back in November, last year, over the former retweeting anti-Muslim videos that were posted by Jayda Fransen — the deputy leader of a far-right group.
At that time, May had said Trump was “wrong” to retweet the videos, with the latter responding by telling May to focus on “destructive radical Islamic terrorism” in the UK.