Boris Johnson has said he sees “no reason” for Donald Trump’s state visit to the United Kingdom to be cancelled, after the US President attacked Sadiq Khan in the wake of the London Bridge terror attack.
The foreign secretary said the London mayor was right to reassure members of the public not to be alarmed by the presence of extra armed police on the streets of the capital.
Trump had misquoted Khan to imply he had said there was no reason to be worried about terrorism.
Johnson told BBC Radio 4’s today programme: “The invitation has been issued and accepted and I see no reason to change that.
“I don’t wish to enter into a row between those two individuals who I think are perfectly able to stick up for themselves.
“But Sadiq was perfectly right to reassure the public about the presence of armed officers on the street.”
The foreign secretary also said this morning the row between Khan and Trump was “trivial”.
Khan has said the government should cancel the state visit it has offered to Trump, but said he did not intend to engage too much with the president.
“We’re not kids in a playground, he’s the President of the US, I’m too busy to respond to his tweets, isn’t he busy?” he told ITV.
Speaking to Channel 4 News last night, Khan said the state visit due to take place should not go ahead.
“I don’t think we should roll out the red carpet to the president of the USA in the circumstances where his policies go against everything we stand for,” he said.
“When you have a special relationship it is no different from when you have got a close mate. You stand with them in times of adversity but you call them out when they are wrong. There are many things about which Donald Trump is wrong.”
Johnson told Sky News this morning that Khan was right to tell Londoners there was “no reason to be alarmed” if they saw extra armed police on the streets.
“Sadiq Khan was saying something very reasonable and sensible about how there was no reason for the public to be alarmed by the presence of armed officers on the streets,” he said.
Asked about the argument between Trump and Khan, he added: “This is frankly a trivial controversy by comparison of the enormity of what happened on Saturday night and the importance of getting the right response.”