Trump to meet Varadkar in Ireland during Europe trip

Trump to meet Varadkar in Ireland during Europe trip

US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will visit Ireland while on a visit to Europe in June, a White House spokesman has said.

Mr Trump and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar will hold a “bilateral meeting” on June 5 in Shannon.

The trip has already been subject to reported controversy over the venue of the talks.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar invited Donald Trump to meet him in Shannon (Brian Lawless/PA)
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar invited Donald Trump to meet him in Shannon (Brian Lawless/PA)

The president’s visit to Ireland is set to be largely private, with Mr Trump expected to base himself at the golf resort he owns in Doonbeg, Co Clare.

Rumours of a disagreement have been reported that focus on whether the meeting with Mr Varadkar would take place on Mr Trump’s property at Doonbeg – the president’s apparent preference – or on more neutral ground.

Irish authorities reportedly preferred nearby Dromoland Castle.

Donald Trump owns Doonbeg golf resort on the west coast of Ireland (Niall Carson/PA)
Donald Trump owns Doonbeg golf resort on the west coast of Ireland (Niall Carson/PA)

But Tánaiste Simon Coveney said reports of a stand-off over locations were exaggerated and not true.

Speaking during the St Patrick's Day engagements in March, Mr Trump said he intended to visit Ireland during 2019.

“I will be coming at some point this year,” he said in the Oval Office sitting beside the Taoiseach.

"I missed it last year, and I would have loved to have been there. It’s a special place and I have a very warm spot for Doonbeg, I will tell you that. It is just a great place."

The much-maligned President had been scheduled to visit Ireland last November after the armistice centenary commemorations but the trip was ultimately postponed.

Opposition TDs and civic activists have promised to protest near Doonbeg during the visit.

- Press Association, with reporting from Daniel McConnell.

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