Alex Salmond: I wish I hadn’t befriended Donald Trump

Alex Salmond has told of his regret at courting Donald Trump during his time as First Minister.

Alex Salmond has told of his regret at courting Donald Trump during his time as First Minister.

Mr Salmond once had a close relationship with the US billionaire when he was initially looking to invest in Scotland.

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The pair fell out in 2012 over the placement of wind turbines off the coast of Mr Trump’s Menie Estate golf course in Aberdeenshire.

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Leader comment: A denunciation of Donald Trump

Before his election, the US President said he would spend £1bn building a golf resort in Aberdeenshire, but critics say much of the investment has yet to materialise.

Appearing on BBC Radio 5 Live yesterday, Mr Salmond said Nicola Sturgeon was right not to have met Mr Trump during his visit.

He said: “I think Nicola Sturgeon played it perfectly [in not meeting Trump]..She did what the people of Scotland wanted her to do.”

The former MP was also asked if he regretted courting the business tycoon. Mr Salmond responded: “If I’d have known then what I know now, yes.

He added: “I remember the Donald Trump of ten years ago. When I first met him, he was a registered Democrat, an opponent of the Iraq War and a donor to the Clinton Foundation.”

Speaking of Mr Trump’s investment at Balmedia, Mr Salmond said: “What was being promised was billions of dollars in investment and thousands of jobs.

“You can either say we should not have believed what Donald Trump or the Trump organisation said to the public inquiry, or alternatively you can blame the people who made the commitment and didn’t come through with it.”

The Trump Organisation says it has made a long-term commitment and intends to continue building on the site.

The US President made no effort to meet with the First Minister while in Scotland.

Ms Sturgeon attended the Pride march in Glasgow rather than the anti-Trump demo in Edinburgh.