President Donald Trump announced the sudden cancellation of a planned trip to cut the ribbon at the new U.S. Embassy in London late Thursday, blaming the decision on the Obama administration’s decision to sell the country’s old embassy for “peanuts.”
Trump had been scheduled to attend a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new U.S. Embassy in Britain next month.
But Thursday night, just minutes before midnight, he tweeted he would not be attending, saying, “Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!”
U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May invited Trump to visit the country during her stop at the White House in late January. She was the first foreign leader to visit the newly inaugurated Trump. May spoke to ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos in September and said the visit was still planned and they were just “sorting out the logistics.”
A full-scale visit from Trump was expected to bring protests of the U.S. president in London, but May told ABC News that was not the reason for the delay.
Trump told reporters in July at the G-20 summit he would be visiting London eventually.
“We’ll work that out. We will be going to London. We’ll be going to London,” Trump told reporters.
The sale of the old embassy actually began under the Bush administration. They announced in an Oct. 2, 2008 release — a month before Barack Obama’s election to his first term — that the U.S. had entered into an agreement with real estate company Ballymore to acquire the new embassy site in southwest London and that the old site “will be offered for sale almost immediately.” The sale to Qatari real estate developer Qatari Diar was completed after Obama became president in November 2009, according to The Telegraph.