WATCH Tory minister Sam Gyimah says he is 'deeply uncomfortable' with Trump visit going ahead

Posted On: 
1st December 2017

Tory Minister Sam Gyimah has said he is “deeply uncomfortable” with Donald Trump coming to the UK on a state visit after the US President retweeted far-right group Britain First. 

Sam Gyimah was appointed Prisons Minister in June last year
Credit: 
PA Images

Speaking on BBC Question Time, the Justice Minister warned the trip - expected next year - could be “divisive at a time when we are trying to unite our country”.  

It comes after Theresa May and other top Cabinet colleagues refused to suggest the invitation could be rescinded.

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The US President sparked fury when he re-tweeted three videos posted by the anti-Muslim group apparently showing them committing hate crimes.

At least one of the videos was falsely captioned as featuring a Muslim migrant.

Justice Minister Mr Gyimah said: “In terms of whether or not Donald Trump comes to this country I am personally deeply uncomfortable about it.

"I am deeply uncomfortable because he is deliberately divisive and this will be divisive at a time when we are trying to unite our country.

“The invitation has been sent and it has been accepted. It’s above my pay grade as to what happens next but I think I am deeply uncomfortable about it.”     

Meanwhile, the Telegraph has revealed that Mr Trump will not come to the UK on a ‘working visit’ pencilled in for January, amid growing tension in the wake of his tweets.

He was expected to formally open America’s new London embassy, but a senior US diplomat told the newspaper: "The idea of a visit has obviously been floated, but not December and not January. I would not expect a Trump visit in January."

The intervention follows calls for Mr Trump’s state visit to be cancelled, with several MPs, including Labour veteran firebrand Dennis Skinner, making the case to Home Secretary Amber Rudd in Parliament yesterday.

However, Ms Rudd stuck to the Downing Street line, saying: “The invitation has been extended and accepted and we have yet to make the arrangements.”

Speaking on a visit to Jordan yesterday, Theresa May refused to back down on her criticism of the US president, even though he singled her out on Twitter and told her to focus on other things.

"The fact that we work together does not mean that we're afraid to say when we think the United States has got it wrong, and be very clear with them," she said.

"And I'm very clear that retweeting from Britain First was the wrong thing to do."