Nigel Farage, pictured today in Peterborough, said a friend in Washington informed him Theresa May’s office had told Mr Trump’s entourage: ‘Don’t meet this guy’
Nigel Farage says Theresa May has banned him from meeting Donald Trump – and has hit back at the Prime Minister for being ‘petty’ and ‘small minded’.
The Brexit Party leader said Number 10 had told the US president’s team not to meet him during his state visit – a move he branded ‘absolutely ludicrous’.
Mr Farage, who is today in Peterborough to campaign for the constituency’s by-election, said that a friend in Washington had informed him that Theresa May’s office had told Mr Trump’s entourage: ‘Don’t meet this guy.’
‘It’s absolutely ludicrous,’ Mr Farage said.
‘I know they’re worried about their Conservative Party but given that I’ve got good connections to him and many of the team around him and that they’re our biggest military ally, intelligence ally, and very important investor in each other’s countries.
‘Why would you want to prevent a meeting between someone who knows the president well?
‘It’s just extraordinary, it’s small minded, petty and it’s not putting the interests of the country first.’
A Downing Street spokesman said: ‘Who the President meets during his visit is of course a matter for him.’
Leader of the Brexit Party Nigel Farage addresses supporters during a rally at the The Broadway Theatre on June 01, 2019 in Peterborough
Pictured: Brexit Party chairman Richard Time poses with Nigel Farage at The Broadway Theatre in Peterborough
The Brexit Party leader said Number 10 had told Donald Trump’s team not to meet him during his state visit – a move he branded ‘absolutely ludicrous’. Above: the pair pictured together in Trump Tower, New York, in 2016, shortly after he was elected US President
Asked about Mr Trump’s comments that Boris Johnson would be an ‘excellent’ choice to replace Mrs May as Conservative Party leader, Mr Farage said: ‘He obviously likes Boris, and he obviously thinks Boris believes in Brexit.
‘Trump is clearly a Brexiteer – he’s never made any bones about that, so yeah he likes Boris. He quite likes Jeremy Hunt by the sounds of it too.’
Mr Trump will be in the UK for a three-day visit from June 3-5, and earlier this week said Mr Farage was a ‘friend of mine’ and a ‘good guy’.
The Brexit Party leader said he knew for ‘absolute fact’ that Mr Trump had been asked to avoid him, telling MailOnline Mrs May was putting ‘Conservative Party unity’ above the ‘national interest’.
Mr Farage said that a friend in Washington had informed him that Theresa May’s office had told Mr Trump’s entourage: ‘Don’t meet this guy’. Above: Farage with Trump in Mississippi in 2016 before he spoke at the then candidate’s campaign rally during his presidential campaign
It comes after Mr Trump praised Mr Farage and Boris Johnson as a ‘big powers’ and ‘friends’ in Washington earlier this week, saying he might meet the two of them during his three-day visit. .
Claiming the government had urged Mr Trump not to see him, Mr Farage said: ‘I have been told that from Washington on very very good source.
‘Ask Downing Street to deny it.
‘You would have thought given our security relationship, our defence relationship, our trade relationship that if this county has somebody who is a friend of the US president and without doubt the closest connected of anybody in this country that this could be used as a resource.
Despite claims that Mrs May’s office had ‘banned’ Farage from seeing Trump, a Downing Street spokesman said who the President meets with ‘is of course a matter for him’
‘And yet the Conservative Party’s unity comes first. She is putting the Conservative Party’s wellbeing above the national interest in this case – it is a simple as that.
‘He has got a difficult balance. The Queen is normally the head of this, he loves the Queen. It is a difficult situation for him.’
What is happening during Trump’s state visit to the UK?
Monday, June 3
The Queen, joined by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, officially welcome The President and Mrs Trump at Buckingham Palace. Royal Gun Salutes fired in Green Park and at the Tower of London.
Private lunch at Buckingham Palace for the President and First Lady, hosted by Queen with Duke of Sussex
Tour of Westminster Abbey, where President will lay a wreath at the Grave of the Unknown Warrior.
Afternoon tea with the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall at Clarence House.
Full state banquet at Buckingham Palace
Tuesday, June 4
Business breakfast meeting at St James’s Palace with Theresa May and Duke of York.
Talks at No10 Downing Street followed by lunch with Mrs May, and a joint press conference.
President and Mrs Trump host a return dinner at Winfield House, official residence of the US Ambassador.
Wednesday, June 5
National Commemorative Event for the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Portsmouth, alongside over 300 D-Day veterans.
On Thursday the US President said he ‘may’ hold talks with Mr Farage and Mr Johnson, saying: ‘Nigel Farage is a friend of mine. Boris is a friend of mine.
‘They are two very good guys, very interesting people.
‘Nigel has had a big victory, he has picked up 32 per cent of the vote starting from nothing (in EU elections).
‘I think they are big powers over there, I think they have done a good job.’
Mr Johnson is the apparent frontrunner to enter Number 10 this summer after Theresa May resigned, admitting she had failed to deliver Brexit.
But there are deepening divisions between Conservative Party factions over how best to deliver Brexit, with Jeremy Hunt and others warning that trying to force No Deal would be political ‘suicide’, and Mr Johnson stating that the UK should leave the bloc by the end of October with or without a deal.
When asked if he was supporting Mr Johnson and Mr Farage, Mr Trump said: ‘They are friends of mine but I haven’t thought about supporting them… I have a lot of respect for both of those men’.
On his previous visit to the UK last July, Mr Trump hailed the qualities of Mr Johnson, who had just resigned as foreign secretary, calling him ‘a very talented guy’ who would make a ‘great prime minister’.
The President said at the time: ‘I was very saddened to see he was leaving government and I hope he goes back in at some point. I think he is a great representative for your country.’
Nigel Farage was famously the first senior UK politician to meet Mr Trump after he was elected – and the two were seen posing together by the golden elevator in his New York penthouse.