10/07/2017 17:06 BST

Theresa May Defends Ivanka Trump Taking Her Father's Seat At G20 Summit

Prime minister says it was 'entirely reasonable'

Reuters/PA Images

Theresa May has said it was “entirely reasonable” for President Trump’s daughter Ivanka to step in and take her father’s seat for a short time during the G20 summit.

Ivanka Trump drew criticism over the weekend after she sat between Theresa May and Chinese President xi Jinping during her father’s absence.

Asked about the move in the Commons today, May defended the president and his daughter.

“In relation to the fact Ivanka Trump took President Trump’s seat at one point, that was after a session we had in the morning where we had launched the Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative which is an initiative which has been developed by Ivanka Trump and the World Bank - so I think it was entirely reasonable,” the prime minister said.

Labour MP Chris Bryant had asked May to explain what had happened.

“In a summit of extraordinarily awkward moments which would rival an episode of the Adams Family, perhaps the most bizarre moment was when the President Trump’s seat was taken by his daughter and the prime minister didn’t seem to bat an eyelid, which is presumably because she is expecting someone else to take her seat soon,” he said in reference to suggestions May could be ousted as Tory leader sooner rather than later.

He added: “I just wonder who she hopes that will be? Whether the home secretary, the foreign secretary or the chancellor?”

President Trump has defended himself and his daughter and claimed Angela Merkel agreed.

A photo of Ivanka Trump, who is an an official but unpaid adviser to her father, sitting next to May was tweeted by a Russian official.

President Trump had earlier also praised his daughter’s contribution. “I’m very proud of my daughter, Ivanka, always have been, from day one, I had to tell you that, from day one,” he said. “She’s always been great. A champion. She’s a champion.”