Donald Trump last night delivered a huge boost to Britain by promising a trade deal within weeks of taking office to help make Brexit a ‘great thing’.
The President-elect spoke in glowing terms of his ‘love’ for the UK and revealed he was inviting Theresa May to visit him ‘right after’ he gets into the White House.
He said that he wants a trade agreement between the two countries secured ‘very quickly’ – making a mockery of President Obama’s threat that, if the country voted for Brexit, we would be at the ‘back of the queue’.
He said: ‘I think it’s very tough. People, countries want their own identity and the UK wanted its own identity.’
In a joint interview with Michael Gove for the Times, and the German newspaper Bild, Mr Trump also revealed that Mrs May had written to him just after Christmas.
She sent a gift of a copy of Winston Churchill’s address to the American people, shortly after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
In the letter the PM told Mr Trump that she hoped the sentiment of ‘unity and fraternal association’ between the two countries was ‘just as true today as it has ever been’.
In comments that are likely to trigger controversy at home and abroad, he also:
- Declared that he could agree a nuclear weapons reduction deal with Russia’s President Putin in return for lifting US sanctions.
- He said: ‘For one thing, I think nuclear weapons should be way down and reduced very substantially, that’s part of it.’
- Pledged that orders will be signed next Monday to strengthen America’s borders, which could include travel restrictions on Europeans coming to the US
- Threatened ‘extreme vetting’ for those entering America from parts of the world known for Islamist terrorism.
- Said that he will start off by trusting Mrs Merkel and Mr Putin – but that might not last long.
- Slammed Nato as ‘obsolete’ and claimed they had ‘not bothered about terrorism’.
- Described the decision to invade Iraq as ‘possibly the worst decision ever made in the history of our country’, saying it was like ‘throwing rocks into a beehive’.
During the interview at Trump Tower, the president-elect told Vote Leave champion Mr Gove: ‘I love the UK.’
Pointing to a possible meeting with Mrs May at the White House in February, he said: ‘We’re gonna work very hard to get it done quickly and done properly. Good for both sides.
‘I will be meeting with [Mrs May]. She’s requesting a meeting and we’ll have a meeting right after I get into the White House and it’ll be, I think we’re gonna get something done very quickly.’
Mr Trump said he thought that ‘Brexit is going to end up being a great thing’.
Photo Credit: The Times