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Trump cancels Britain trip, blames Obama for 'peanuts' London embassy deal

12 January 2018 - 32   - 0

LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump canceled a trip to London scheduled for next month to open a new embassy, blaming Barack Obama for selling off the old one for “peanuts” in a bad deal.

FILE PHOTO: The new United States embassy building is seen during a press preview near the River Thames in London, Britain December 13, 2017. REUTERS/Stefan Rousseau/Pool/File Photo

More than a year into his presidency, Trump has yet to visit London, with many British voters promising mass protests against a U.S. leader they see as crude, volatile and opposed to their values on a range of issues.

"(The) reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for "peanuts," only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars," Trump said in a tweet late on Thursday.

“Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!” Trump said.

The decision to acquire a new London embassy site on the south bank of the Thames was announced in 2008 under George W. Bush along with the plans to put the Grosvenor Square site in Mayfair up for sale.

A pillar of Britain’s foreign policy since World War Two, the so-called “special relationship” with Washington has taken on added importance as Britain prepares to leave the European Union in 2019 and seeks new major trade deals.

But senior British officials have been dismayed by some of Trump’s pronouncements, particularly a proposed ban on Muslims entering the United States and most recently when Trump rebuked Prime Minister Theresa May on Twitter after she criticized him for retweeting British far-right anti-Islam videos.

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