Society

UK Prime Minister Pressured To Cancel Trump Meeting

| by Robert Fowler

Several British lawmakers have called on U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May to cancel a scheduled state visit for President Donald Trump following criticisms Trump leveled against Mayor Sadiq Khan of London.

On June 4, three armed suspects drove a van through pedestrians before going on a stabbing spree in Borough Market, London. All three assailants were neutralized by police, but the attack left seven dead and 48 wounded, ABC News reports.

That evening, Trump took to social media to blast Khan for his response to the attack.

"At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is 'no reason to be alarmed!'" Trump tweeted out.

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The president took Khan's words out of context. Following the attack, the London mayor released a statement warning his constituents that their city would have an intensified police presence.

"You will see an increased police presence today, including armed officers and uniformed officers," Khan told London residents. "There is no reason to be alarmed by this."

The mayor urged his constituents to remain vigilant because "an attack across the country is still highly likely."

Trump's tweet drew controversy in the U.K., where lawmakers accused the U.S. president of smearing Khan's stance on terrorism.

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"Sadiq Khan has showed calm and dignified resolve in the face of these cowardly terrorist attacks," said Tim Farron of the British Liberal Democrats, according to CNBC. "He is more of a statesman than Trump will ever be."

A spokesman for the London mayor derided Trump's statement as an "ill-informed tweet that deliberately takes out of context his remarks urging Londoners not to be alarmed when they saw more police -- including armed officers -- on the streets."

On June 5, Trump doubled down on his criticism of Khan, accusing the London mayor of spinning his rhetoric.

"Pathetic excuse by London Mayor Sadiq Khan who had to think fast on his 'no reason to be alarmed' statement," Trump tweeted out. "MSM [mainstream media] is working hard to sell it!"

That tweet prompted several lawmakers to demand that May cancel Trump's scheduled trip to the U.K. May had personally invited Trump to visit her country on Jan. 27, a week after he was sworn into office, The Independent reports.

"Trump is an embarrassment to America ... May absolutely must withdraw the state visit," Farron tweeted out. "This is a man insulting our national values at a time of introspection and mourning."

Senior Labour parliamentary member David Lammy chimed in with his own tweet, describing Trump as "just a troll."

"Show some bottle please [May]," Lammy tweeted out, using a British expression for demonstrating courage. "Cancel the state visit and tell Trump where to get off."

During a press conference, May declined to answer calls to cancel Trump's state trip but stated: "I think Sadiq Khan is doing a good job and it’s wrong to say anything else."

Sources: ABC NewsCNBCThe Independent / Photo credit: Surrey County Council News/Flickr

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