British government rejects petition to cancel US President visit

The British government rejected a petition calling for Donald Trump's state visit to the UK to be cancelled, but it will still be debated by MPs in Parliament next week.

The British government officially rejected a petition that was signed by nearly two million people calling for Donald Trump's state visit to the UK to be cancelled.

The Foreign Office said it would extend "the full courtesy of a State Visit" to the US president, who had recently issued a travel ban against refugees and nationals from seven Muslim-majority countries.

The petition, signed by 1.8 million people, argued that Trump should "not be invited to make an official State Visit because it would cause embarrassment to Her Majesty the Queen."

But Theresa May's government rejected the call and in a written response said it "recognised the strong views" expressed by signatories of the petition, but that it did not support it.

"During her visit to the United States on 27 January 2017, the Prime Minister, on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen, invited President Trump for a State Visit to the UK later this year. The invitation was accepted.

"This invitation reflects the importance of the relationship between the United States of America and the United Kingdom," the government said.

"HM Government believes the President of the United States should be extended the full courtesy of a State Visit. We look forward to welcoming President Trump once dates and arrangements are finalised."

British parliamentarians will still however hold a debate on Trump's state visit on February 20, as well as a second debate on another petition calling for the state visit to go ahead, which gained more than 309,000 signatures.

This follows the procedures of the British government's petition system, which requires that topics to be considered for parliamentary debate if more than 100,000 signatures are received.

Source: Alara biya

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