Donald Trump in Scotland for meetings and ‘hopefully golf’ as protesters gather
Demonstrations against the controversial leader are taking place outside his golf courses in Ayrshire and Aberdeenshire, as well as in Edinburgh.
Donald Trump has said he will spend his weekend in Scotland in meetings and “hopefully” playing golf, as protests against his visit to the UK continued.
The US president and his wife Melania arrived in Scotland on board Air Force One on Friday evening, before travelling by motorcade to his Trump Turnberry resort in Ayrshire.
Police snipers were on duty to keep guard over the controversial president, while other officers patrolled the beach beside the course, where some protesters had gathered.
I have arrived in Scotland and will be at Trump Turnberry for two days of meetings, calls and hopefully, some golf - my primary form of exercise! The weather is beautiful, and this place is incredible! Tomorrow I go to Helsinki for a Monday meeting with Vladimir Putin.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 14, 2018
Mr Trump took to Twitter on Saturday morning to declare: “I have arrived in Scotland and will be at Trump Turnberry for two days of meetings, calls and hopefully, some golf – my primary form of exercise!
“The weather is beautiful, and this place is incredible! Tomorrow I go to Helsinki for a Monday meeting with Vladimir Putin.”
The president is making what has been described as a “private visit” to Scotland, after meetings with Prime Minister Theresa May and the Queen on Friday.
He has strong connections with the country as his mother was born on the Hebridean island of Lewis before emigrating to the US, while he owns two golf resorts – Turnberry and Trump International in Balmedie, Aberdeenshire.
Protesters gathered outside both sites, with one of those outside the Aberdeenshire course carrying a placard telling the president: “Stop saying you’re Scottish”.
At Donald Trump’s Aberdeenshire golf course, where protesters are just as creative with their signs... pic.twitter.com/pXfFZqTiEM— Lucy Christie (@LucyChristiePA) July 14, 2018
Tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of London on Friday to protest against Mr Trump’s visit.
And Greenpeace flew a paraglider with a banner message saying “Trump Well Below Par” above the Turnberry resort on Friday evening.
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard pledged there would be “peaceful, but passionate” protests against Mr Trump.
The Labour politician, who is due to join marchers in Edinburgh later, hit out at Mr Trump for his “misogyny, his racism, his bigotry” as well as his “denunciation of climate change and his anti-trade union actions”.
Writing for the Red Robin website, Mr Leonard said: “Donald Trump is not welcome here. The horrific scenes at the Mexican border are just the latest example of his repudiation of decent human values. Caging children like animals is barbaric and we simply cannot roll out the red carpet for a US president who treats people that way.
“These demonstrations are not simply just about the politics of Donald Trump, it is about his moral values as well.'”
He added: “It is not about right versus left, it is about right versus wrong.”
At Balmedie, disability activist Fiona Robertson, 37, said: “Trump threatens the human rights of disabled people, whether it’s in the US or UK or anywhere he has influence.
“He’s begun to roll back some of the moves towards universal healthcare that they had been stepping towards in the States – disabled people are already dying there for lack of care,” she claimed.
Speaking about the nationwide protests Ms Robertson, from Aberdeen, said: “I think that it’s important that we’re not complicit.
“I think that silence becomes complicity – it’s taken as people don’t care enough to protest so they can just carry on regardless.
“For as much as he’s a very powerful man, he has a very easily bruised ego and I think that making sure that he and his cabinet and indeed the people of the world see that those ideas, those principles are not welcome Scotland is a really important thing to show up for.”