POLITICS
03/06/2019 17:10 BST | Updated 04/06/2019 11:41 BST

Jeremy Corbyn Will Join Anti-Trump Protest During State Visit

Labour leader set to make clear his opposition on demonstration against US president.

Jeremy Corbyn will attend and speak at a protest against Donald Trump’s state visit to the UK, his office has revealed.

The Labour leader will be among the headline speakers at the demonstration, which is due to end in Parliament Square, just yards from the US president’s meeting with Theresa May in Downing Street.

It will be the first time ever that the official leader of the Opposition has joined protests during any State Visit, let alone one with a traditional ally like the United States.

Corbyn has already decided to boycott a State Banquet with Trump and the Queen at Buckingham Palace on Monday evening.

Other speakers at the Tuesday protest are expected to include shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry, TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady and Green party MP Caroline Lucas.

The demonstration is set to start in Trafalgar Square, but will be blocked from marching down Whitehall, in front of 10 Downing Street, due to security concerns.

It is the centrepiece of a string of planned protests against the Trump visit, and the Parliament Square destination will again feature the giant balloon blimp depicting Trump as a man-baby.

Press Association
The giant Trump baby blimp due to fly over Parliament Square on Tuesday

Earlier, Corbyn gave his strong support to London Mayor Sadiq Khan after the president tweeted abuse on his arrival in the UK.

Air Force One had not even touched down before Trump launched a Twitter tirade at Khan, who had suggested the UK should not be rolling out the ‘red carpet’ for a man infamous for his racist and sexist conduct.

“Sadiq Khan, who by all accounts has done a terrible job as Mayor of London, has been foolishly “nasty” to the visiting President of the United States, by far the most important ally of the United Kingdom,” Trump tweeted.

“He is a stone cold loser who should focus on crime in London, not me......”

Trump’s broadside came in response to a Sunday newspaper article in which Khan described him as “one of the most egregious examples of a growing global threat” and compared the language he has used to that of the “fascists of the 20th century”.

Khan’s spokesman responded to Trump by saying “childish insults” should be “beneath the president of the United States”. 

“Sadiq is representing the progressive values of London and our country, warning that Donald Trump is the most egregious example of a growing far-right threat around the globe, which is putting at risk the basic values that have defined our liberal democracies for more than 70 years.”

In tweets of his own, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio also defended his London counterpart, declaring it was better to be compared to Khan than to Boris Johnson.

A giant inflatable Donald Trump baby blimp is expected to fly over London during the US president’s state visit after its owners reached their fundraising target.

Organisers plan to fly the 20ft blimp above Parliament Square for two hours from 9am on Tuesday, the second day of Mr Trump’s UK visit.

The blimp, which can be flown up to 100ft in the air, depicts the US president wearing a nappy and clutching a mobile phone.

Critics point out that Corbyn did attend a state banquet for Chinese president Xi Jinping, when he visited the UK in 2015.