Americans in United Kingdom warned to keep 'low profile' during Trump visit

Elias Hubbard
July 12, 2018

Trump Baby, designed as a statement of protest as Trump visits the United Kingdom this weekend, was brought to life by a crowdfunding campaign, which exceeded its initial £5,000 (S$9,000) target so exponentially that there are now plans to take the balloon around the world, following - and taunting - the USA president wherever he goes.

BBC diplomatic correspondent James Robbins described the trip as "the most controversial visit ever made by an American president to Britain".

A black-tie dinner will be hosted in Blenheim Palace near Oxford. The dinner will include 100 ministers and guests, including people from a variety of sectors.

The state visit has never actually been scheduled - there is fierce opposition to it in many quarters of Britain - and this trip is part of a working visit instead, meaning among things that Trump will overnight at Winfield House, the US ambassador's handsome residence near Regents Park rather than in Buckingham Palace or Windsor Castle as a guest of the queen.

On Friday he will visit PM Theresa May at Chequers, set to be followed by a meeting with Her Majesty The Queen at Windsor Castle. The president's time in Scotland is not counted as part of the working visit.

Trump "has proudly sparked passionate often divisive emotions about things, I think Americans living here to eager to turn out and express their views", he said.

"It is in the interests of the U.K.to stand up and take a firm moral stance", said Zoe Gardner, a researcher and spokesperson of the Stop Trump Coalition, which is organizing protests this week in cities across the country.

"Nearly all police forces in England and Wales are providing officers and resources to assist with the operations in areas hosting the visit".

Up to 50,000 people are expected to descend on the capital, with around 10,000 cops on the ground.

The six-metre high blimp, dubbed "Trump Baby", has been granted permission to fly above Parliament Square for two hours on Friday morning. Britain's Police Federation has warned that the visit will put "unquestionable pressure" on the country's security services-and nearly every police force in England and Wales will send extra police to London to help keep order.

The Treasury has confirmed it will fund policing costs of up to £5m in Scotland.

Image copyright AFP Image caption The president will stay at Winfield House on Thursday night What about Trump supporters?

The security operation is estimated to cost between £8m and £10m and will put police under "unquestionable pressure", according to Police Federation chairman Simon Kempton, who said operations were likely to become "merely reactive" during the visit.

"Boris Johnson's a friend of mine, he's been very nice to me, very supportive and maybe I'll speak to him when I get over there".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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