Trump visit: People in Portsmouth tell US president to show respect during D-Day commemorations
PEOPLE in Portsmouth have issued a warning to Donald Trump when he visits Portsmouth this summer for major D-Day commemorations: You must show respect.
President Trump is due in the city as events are held on Southsea Common in June to mark 75 years since the Normandy Landings.
But people who spoke to The News today have said the 45th president of the United States must not be a distraction or overshadow the seriousness of the occasion.
Retired Janet White, 79, from Havant Road, Drayton, said: ‘I wouldn’t want to go and see him, I think he’s a joke really but I think he’s dangerous.
‘A comedian has just been elected president in Ukraine and I thought “that’s two comedians in charge now” – that’s what I think about him.
‘He’s treating presidency like a business because that’s all he knows. He’s not a diplomat and has no diplomacy.
‘D-Day 70 was absolutely wonderful. You will find a lot of people won’t go, a lot of older people especially.’
Her daughter Lindsey White, 57, of Grove Road, Farlington, added: ‘He hasn’t got a clue. I think it will put people off.’
University of Portsmouth student Jack Churcher, 19, from Brighton but who is living in the city centre, said he does not want to see protests.
He said: ‘I wouldn’t say it’s a distraction - we’re celebrating quite an important occasion so people are probably worried about that more than they are about Trump coming.
‘I’d hope there won’t be protests on a day that’s quite important but I suppose it could be seen as distracting but the more important thing is celebrating the day itself. That should be in the front of people’s minds rather than certain people that should be there.’
Others were more supportive of Mr Trump’s visit to Portsmouth.
Retired William Holliday, 85, from Southsea, said: ‘He’s president of the US, the biggest democracy, an old ally of ours – I wouldn’t normally support him but he’s American president.
‘Arrest anybody who gets in his way – I don’t like him but that’s the way it should be.’
Mr Trump will be in the United Kingdom from June 3-5 on a state visit, joining D-Day commemorations in Southsea on his final day in the country.
Mum-of-one Kirsty Fisher, 34, of St Paul’s Road in the city centre, said Mr Trump must be respectful.
She said: ‘If he’s coming down to respect the D-Day events and respecting what they’ve done on D-Day he needs to be respectful to others when in Portsmouth because there are a lot of people who don’t like him. He can come but the rules are different here in Portsmouth.’
The White House confirmed Mr Trump will travel to Normandy after the service in the city.
American national Kaine Ugo, 19, is studying marketing at the University of Portsmouth and is in his first year. Living in Southsea while he studies he said does not like Mr Trump but wants to hear what he has to say.
He said: ‘I don’t like him because of the way he acts and it’s irresponsible for a president and he doesn’t really look out for the welfare of all citizens in America.’
Kaine added: ‘I would like to see him, what he would say, what he’s coming to say.
‘As president of America yes he should come and say something and hopefully he receives a non-hostile welcome.’