Lon­don pro­test­ers fly anti-Trump blimp

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - WORLD -

THOU­SANDS of peo­ple wav­ing ban­ners and bang­ing pots and pans took to the streets of Lon­don to protest against US pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump on his first of­fi­cial visit to Bri­tain.

More than 64 000 peo­ple signed up to demon­strate in Lon­don against the visit and other protests were ex­pected in ma­jor cities around the coun­try. Sup­port­ers car­ried plac­ards say­ing “Dump Trump” and “Keep your tiny hands off women’s rights” while oth­ers chanted “Don­ald Trump has got to go”.

Ear­lier, ac­tivists floated a 6m-high blimp out­side par­lia­ment de­pict­ing the US pres­i­dent as an or­ange, snarling nappy-wear­ing baby.

“I wanted to make it very clear, when Trump came to the coun­try, that we don’t agree with his poli­cies,” said Kim­ber­ley, 35, at the protests in cen­tral Lon­don. “I think it is im­por­tant for him to see it... it will show the peo­ple that he is prej­u­diced against that we are be­hind them.”

Bri­tain re­gards its close ties with the US, which it calls the spe­cial re­la­tion­ship, as a key­stone of for­eign pol­icy and Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May has courted Trump ahead of a pro­jected de­par­ture from the EU. But some Bri­tons see Trump as crude, vo­latile, un­re­li­able and op­posed to their val­ues on a range of is­sues.

Trump, who ar­rived in Bri­tain on Thurs­day, told the Sun news­pa­per that planned protests against him in Lon­don and other Bri­tish cities made him feel un­wel­come, so he was avoid­ing the cap­i­tal as much as pos­si­ble.

He steered clear of the demon­stra­tions yesterday by meet­ing May and Queen El­iz­a­beth out­side Lon­don.

“I guess when they put out blimps to make me feel un­wel­come, there is no rea­son for me to go to Lon­don,” he told the news­pa­per. “I used to love Lon­don as a city. I haven’t been there in a long time. But when they make you feel un­wel­come, why would I stay there?” – Reuters/African news Agency (ANA)

PIC­TURE: AP/AFRICAN NEWS AGENCY (ANA)

A 6m high car­toon baby blimp of US pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump is flown as a protest against his visit, in Par­lia­ment Square in Lon­don, Eng­land, yesterday.

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