I’ll tell Trump if I don’t agree with him, says May on eve of US visit

The Star Early Edition - - WORLD -

BRI­TISH Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May said yes­ter­day she would not be afraid to tell Don­ald Trump when she finds some­thing he has said un­ac­cept­able, as she pre­pares to meet the new US pres­i­dent in Wash­ing­ton this week.

May, who is Bri­tain’s sec­ond wo­man premier, made the com­ments af­ter thou­sands of women marched in Lon­don on Satur­day to protest about Trump’s at­ti­tude to women, join­ing demon­stra­tions held from Aus­tralia and Asia to Europe and Wash­ing­ton.

Fol­low­ing last year’s vote to leave the Euro­pean Union, the Bri­tish gov­ern­ment has been keen to deepen ties with the US and other na­tions out­side Europe to show that Brexit will not di­min­ish its stand­ing in the world.

The meet­ing on Fri­day will be an op­por­tu­nity for May, who ini­tially strug­gled to build re­la­tions with Trump’s team, to dis­cuss what has long been called the “spe­cial re­la­tion­ship” be­tween Lon­don and Wash­ing­ton, a pil­lar of Bri­tish for­eign pol­icy.

But the visit will also be clouded by his per­ceived at­ti­tude to­wards women, in­clud­ing a boast in a 2005 video about grab­bing women’s gen­i­tals, which prompted the wave of mass protests on Satur­day.

“I’ve al­ready said that some of the com­ments that Don­ald Trump has made in re­la­tion to women are un­ac­cept­able, some of those he him­self has apol­o­gised for,” May told the BBC.

“When I sit down (with Trump) I think the biggest state­ment that will be made about the role of women is the fact that I will be there as a fe­male prime min­is­ter,” she said.

May is try­ing to im­prove re­la­tions with Trump af­ter he ir­ri­tated the Bri­tish gov­ern­ment soon af­ter be­ing elected by say­ing Nigel Farage, an out­spo­ken anti-EU cam­paigner and critic of May, would be a good choice for Bri­tain’s am­bas­sador to Wash­ing­ton. – Reuters

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.