Friday 23 March 2018

Kenny has no plans to meet with Trump

Donald Trump has cancelled his planned visit to Ireland, according to reports. Photo: REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
Donald Trump has cancelled his planned visit to Ireland, according to reports. Photo: REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has no plans to meet Donald Trump later this month as his schedule is expected to be "quite full" during the US presidential candidate's controversial visit.

Mr Trump has yet to request a meeting with Mr Kenny or a member of the Cabinet - and is instead due to visit his resort in west Clare in a "private capacity", according to the Taoiseach's spokesman.

The spokesman also told reporters that the visit by the US businessman would "absolutely overlap" with an official visit to Ireland by outgoing US Vice President Joe Biden. Mr Kenny has informally invited Mr Biden to play a game of golf.

But Mr Biden's trip to Ireland later this month will undoubtedly be overshadowed by the visit of Mr Trump to Doonbeg. The visit has gained significant media attention as a result of Mr Kenny's decision last week to describe the US businessman as "dangerous" and "racist".

Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar labelled Mr Trump's attitudes towards women as "misogynistic".

However, unlike Mr Kenny, Mr Varadkar has said he would be willing to meet Mr Trump during his visit. Other cabinet members such as Michael Creed, Denis Naughten and Finian McGrath have also expressed a willingness to meet Mr Trump.


Pressed on the matter last night, Mr Kenny's spokesman said there were no plans to organise a meeting with Mr Trump.

"He is here in a private capacity... and we have received no request," the spokesman said.

He also said Mr Kenny did not intend to refrain from making remarks about presumptive presidential nominees.

"There is this clarion call always for politicians to speak straight and say it how it is and then when they do, they want them to unsay it," he added.

Meanwhile, Sinn Féin has twice declined to say whether the party's leader Gerry Adams will meet Mr Trump during his visit, expected to take place on June 24.

Mr Trump previously attended a Sinn Féin fundraiser in the US. Asked, whether Mr Adams would meet Mr Trump, a spokeswoman said: "We haven't received any invitation to meet with Donald Trump."

Irish Independent

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