A planned ‘working visit’ by US president Donald Trump to Britain in January has been shelved by American diplomats, according to reports.
Mr Trump, the US president, had been pencilled in for a visit in the first month of 2018 to formally open America’s new London embassy.
The trip, a low key version of a state visit with no meeting with the Queen, was proposed as a way of allowing Mr Trump to come to the UK without sparking the mass protests which would accompany a formal state visit.
Yesterday, after the transatlantic row between Mr Trump and Prime Minister Theresa May over the president’s anti-Muslim video retweets, it was reported that the trip has been postponed indefinitely.
Meanwhile, the far-right group Britain First has boasted of gaining hundreds of new membership applications after Mr Trump shared the three anti-Muslim videos it had posted online.
Britain First leader Paul Golding also said the group’s Facebook posts were reaching hundreds of thousands more users.
The Prime Minister has said Mr Trump was “wrong” to retweet videos posted by Britain First’s deputy leader Jayda Fransen, which she condemned as a “hateful organisation” dedicated to spreading division and mistrust.
Golding, who is facing charges of religiously aggravated harassment alongside Ms Fransen, said the row had boosted Britain First’s popularity. The 35 year-old said: “We have had hundreds of new membership applications and our organic Facebook reach (number of unique users) has increased by hundreds of thousands.”
In a further sign of the seriousness of the row, Britain’s ambassador to Washington, Sir Kim Darroch, said he had raised the Government’s concerns with the White House.
Brendan Cox, whose MP wife Jo was murdered by a man shouting “Britain first”, praised politicians and media figures for criticising Mr Trump, tweeting: “Can’t remember the last time everyone from @jeremycorbyn to @theresa_may, @DanielJHannan to @HackneyAbbott, @OwenJones84 to @piersmorgan, has been on the same side.
“Thanks @realDonaldTrump for reminding us that we have #moreincommon and no time for hatred.”