Monday 26 August 2019

Mike Pence to visit Ireland early next month on behalf of Trump

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is greeted by US vice president Mike Pence and wife Karen (Niall Carson/PA)
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is greeted by US vice president Mike Pence and wife Karen (Niall Carson/PA)

Sam Blewett

US vice president Mike Pence is set to visit Ireland and the UK on behalf of Donald Trump early next month, it has been confirmed.

He will travel to Ireland on September 6 to meet Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.

There, according to the White House, he will voice the States' "commitment to maintaining peace, prosperity, and stability in Ireland by upholding the Good Friday Agreement".

He will also discuss trade, investment and strengthening the economic relationship between the two nations.

This comes after the Republican will visit the UK to discuss Brexit, Iran and the "threat of Chinese malign influence" between September 4 and 5, the White House said.

The announcement of the visit came after US House speaker Nancy Pelosi warned there is "no chance" of a US-UK trade deal if Brexit jeopardises the peace accord in Northern Ireland.

She said the Democrats, who control the House of Representatives, will block the deal in Congress if the EU departure "undermines" the agreement.

Mr Pence is a controversial figure and has been particularly criticised over his stance on LGBTQ rights.

Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, one of the US's largest gay rights groups, once said Mr Pence "poses one of the greatest threats to equality in the history of our movement".

PA Media

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