Trump insults the Mayor of London on a visit to the UK

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London (AFP)— U.S. President Donald Trump started a state visit to Britain on Monday by branding London's mayor a "loser" before heading to Queen Elizabeth II for lunch, following delicate comments on Brexit.

Trump's aircraft hadn't even touched when he tweeted that Sadiq Khan, who was highly critical of Trump's red-carpet welcome, had done a "terrible job" in London.

The president called the mayor a "stone cold loser," adding: "Kahn reminds me a lot of our very stupid and incompetent NYC mayor, (Bill) de Blasio, who also did a terrible job-only half his height." In any case, I'm looking forward to being a great UK friend, "he added.

Later on Monday, Queen Elizabeth II was scheduled to welcome Trump and his wife Melania to Buckingham Palace, where they will be treated with an honor guard, a private lunch and a glittering banquet.

But under the pomp and ceremony, Britain is in turmoil with Prime Minister Theresa May because she steps down over her handling of the exit from the European Union of her country within weeks.

Trump weighed in on Brexit's divisive issue, declaring before he arrived that Britain's former foreign minister Boris Johnson would make an "excellent" choice to succeed May. In a round of British newspaper interviews, he also recommended her successor to walk away from Brussels talks, refuse to pay Britain's agreed divorce bill and leave the EU with no deal.

The "special relationship" between the United Kingdom and the United States was already under strain over various approaches to Iran, the use of Chinese technology in 5 G networks, climate change, and personal policies of Trump.

Labor's Khan led opposition to the three-day visit by writing a newspaper article on Sunday in which he compared the US leader with the 1930s and 1940s European dictators.

"Donald Trump is just one of the worst examples of a growing global threat," wrote Khan.

His spokesman called Trump's "childish" tweets and "under the US president."
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