Trump ‘cancels’ London visit to dedicate new U.S. Embassy, citing ‘bad deal’ to sell and relocate building

Published on Jan 12 2018 - - World - -

President Trump said he has called off a planned ceremonial visit to Britain because he didn’t want to be associated with what he called a bad real estate deal in which the U.S. Embassy is being relocated from central London to “an off location.”

In a Twitter message shortly before midnight Thursday, Trump implicitly rejected reports that the trip — never announced but widely assumed to be in February — was being scrapped over concerns that the U.S. leader would be met with widespread protests.

“Reason I canceled 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,” Trump wrote.In fact, it was never certain that Trump would make the to visit Britain, historically America’s closest ally. The last word from the U.S. ambassador there, Woody Johnson, was that while he hoped Trump would come to dedicate the new embassy, no date had been set for such a journey.
U.S. diplomats are expected to move in to the new quarters this month. The embassy’s website has a large banner reading, “1 week until we move.”

Trump had been expected to combine a ceremonial opening for the new building — a distinctive glassy cube — with an official visit at the invitation of Prime Minister Theresa May.

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