Donald Trump has confirmed he will not travel to the UK in February amid fears he would not be made welcome. The US president was due to visit Britain to open the new United States embassy.
However, after speculation on 11 January that he had backed away from the idea, he took to Twitter on 12 January to confirm the cancellation.
Writing on Twitter, Trump said he thought the embassy’s move from Grosvenor Square to Nine Elms in south London, was a ‘bad deal’.
He wrote: ‘Reason I cancelled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for ‘peanuts’ only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars.
‘Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!’
The United States announced plans to move from its current embassy building in Mayfair in 2008. The new building will open on 16 January.
On the embassy web page about the project, it said: ‘The project has been funded entirely by the proceeds of the sale of other US Government properties in London, not through appropriated funds.’
Trump’s decision not to come to the country comes despite Prime Minister Theresa May recently saying that a future visit was still on the cards.
May controversially extended the offer of a state visit when she became the first world leader to meet Mr Trump in the White House. Since then, however, the president has indicated he does not want to take up the invitation if he is going to face mass demonstrations.
Last year he told May he did not want to go ahead with a visit until the British public supported it. No new date has been offered, raising the prospect of a major diplomatic snub.
Trump is tangled up in a new row after Washington claimed Britain is as dangerous as the Congo. The advice by the State Department ranks the UK on a par with countries the US President has described as “s***holes”.
It said that citizens need to have increased caution because “groups continue plotting possible attacks in the United Kingdom”.