Trump in Ireland: President looking forward to visiting ‘a great place’

‘We’re going to be staying at Doonbeg and ... we’ll be meeting with a lot of the Irish officials’

US president Donald Trump: ‘Nigel Farage is a friend of mine, Boris is a friend of mine. They are two very good guys.’

US president Donald Trump: ‘Nigel Farage is a friend of mine, Boris is a friend of mine. They are two very good guys.’

 

As he left the White House this morning for a visit to Colorado US president Donald Trump said he is looking forward to his Ireland trip next week .

“We’re going to be staying at Doonbeg in Ireland because it’s convenient and a great place,” he said. “We’ll be meeting with a lot of the Irish officials. It’ll be an overnight stay and I look forward to that.”

When asked about what he will be discussing with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, the president replied: “A lot of different issues.”

A senior administration official said that there is only one public event scheduled by the US president during his visit. Speaking on Thursday afternoon the official said that the bilateral meeting between Mr Trump and the Taoiseach is “the only public event that we have to announce at this time”.

Both leaders will have “a range of bilateral issues to discuss”, said the official, including their “shared international interests and priorities. The president and the Taoiseach saw each other in March so they will probably pick up on some of the issues they raised then.”

He also expressed his admiration for Boris Johnson, the frontrunner to succeed Theresa May as British prime minister and Nigel Farage, leader of the Brexit party.

“Two very good guys,” he said. “Nigel Farage is a friend of mine, Boris is a friend of mine. They are two very good guys, very interesting people. Nigel has picked up 32 per cent of the vote starting from nothing and I think they are big powers over there. They have done a good job.”

It is expected that Mr Trump will stay two nights at his Co Clare golf course next week. He is due to arrive in Shannon Airport on Wednesday, June 5th, at the end of his three-day state visit to Britain. He will then depart on the morning of June 6th for Normandy where he is due to attend the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion.

He is then expected to return to Ireland following the Normandy visit and spend a second night at Doonbeg Golf Course before returning to the United States the following day.

The Taoiseach is due to meet the American president for a bilateral meeting next Wednesday in Shannon Airport.

It is anticipated that Mr Trump will play golf during his stay at Doonbeg – his first visit to his property since becoming president of the United States more than two years ago.

Buckingham Palace

Further details of his state visit to Britain have been confirmed in recent days. Mr Trump will be welcomed next Monday, June 3rd, by Queen Elizabeth at a ceremony in Buckingham Palace.

A state banquet will be held that evening in the ballroom of the palace, which will be attended by prominent British and US figures and other members of the royal family. A meeting between Mr Trump and outgoing prime minister Theresa May is also scheduled, as well as a dinner at the residence of the US ambassador. Mr Trump will also attend the D-Day commemorations in Portsmouth on the final day of the visit, before departing for Shannon.