Thousands protest as Trump plays golf

Thousands protest as Trump plays golf

August 06, 2018 | More from TrumpTrending

Thousands protest as Trump plays golf

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Media captionDonald Trump was booed by protesters while playing golf at Turnberry

Thousands took to the streets of Edinburgh in a third day of protests against Donald Trump’s UK visit.

They demonstrated as the US president played golf during a visit to his Turnberry resort on the Ayrshire coast.

Mr Trump is in Scotland on a private visit with his family ahead of a summit with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

No protesters were arrested in Scotland, but the Met Police said 12 people were detained following pro-Trump processions in London.

During his Saturday afternoon golf game he was booed by demonstrators gathered at the perimeter of the Turnberry complex.

Earlier, Police Scotland confirmed that they were investigating how a paraglider was able to fly over the resort hotel with a banner criticising Mr Trump.

The president’s visit to Scotland has been accompanied by a major security operation.

Police snipers are positioned on tiers of temporary scaffolding overlooking the golf course, with a large number of other officers patrolling the grounds and surrounding area.

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Image caption The march and protest in Edinburgh began at midday on Saturday
Image caption The police estimated that 9,000 people joined the Edinburgh demonstration. Organisers said they believed some 60,000 had taken to the streets

Mr Trump travelled north of the border for the weekend after meeting Prime Minister Theresa May at Chequers and The Queen at Windsor on Friday.

Speaking after talks with Mrs May, the president said a US-UK trade deal “will absolutely be possible”. That came just hours after he told The Sun Theresa May’s Brexit plan could kill an agreement.

Mr Trump has often spoken of his love for Scotland and its people and had been a regular visitor to the country for many years, but this is his first trip since becoming the US leader.

Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell greeted Mr Trump after his Air Force One jet landed at Prestwick Airport in Scotland on Friday evening.

The American president did not meet Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, however, she denied she had refused to see him.

At a gay pride event in Glasgow on Saturday, she told the BBC: “If the opportunity arises to meet the president I will do that and I’m sure if the opportunity arises in the future we will have lots to talk about, including the close and very important links between our two countries.

“In democracies, it’s also important to be able to focus also on where we perhaps disagree, and lots of people disagree with the policies of the Trump administration.”

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Image caption Donald Trump spent most of Saturday afternoon playing a game of golf at Turnberry, the course he bought in 2014
Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Snipers are positioned around the resort, with a heavy police presence

While Mr Trump was at Turnberry, police estimated that about 9,000 protesters walked from the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh to the Meadows for a “carnival of resistance”.

The event featured the giant Trump Baby balloon, which was banned from both Turnberry and Holyrood.

Tens of thousands of people – organisers claim up to 250,000 – protested in London on Friday against Mr Trump’s UK visit.

Demonstrators also filled George Square in Glasgow ahead of his arrival in Scotland.

However, the UK government’s International Trade Secretary Liam Fox told the BBC that the anti-Trump campaigners were “an embarrassment to themselves”.

He believed that the large scale protests in London and other cities “did not reflect the genuine good manners and hospitality of the British people”.

As well as the protests in Edinburgh and at Turnberry, there were supporters of Mr Trump at London’s “Welcome Trump” and “Free Tommy Robinson” processions.

English right-wing activist Robison is currently serving a 13 month jail sentence for potentially prejudicing a court case.

The Met Police said that there were clashes during those processions and 12 people were arrested for a range of alleged crimes, including violent disorder, assault and and public order offences.

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Media captionLiam Fox: ‘Trump protesters an embarrassment to themselves’

Mr Trump – whose mother was Scottish – and members of his family are spending the weekend at the hotel he bought in 2014 before departing on Sunday for the meeting with Russian leader Mr Putin in Finland the following day.

The paraglider stunt, which happened shortly after Mr Trump and his entourage arrived at Turnberry, was reportedly staged by Greenpeace.

Ben Stewart, a spokesman for the organisation, told the BBC: “It wasn’t dangerous at all. We let the police know about 10 or 15 minutes before that we were coming in.

“We phoned them, we had someone on the police line who informed them. We thought it was important that the president actually saw a real-life protester.

“There’s tens, maybe hundreds of thousands of people on the streets around the UK.”

The police said no arrest had been made.

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Media captionGlider protester at Trump’s resort

Police insisted they wanted to strike a balance between “protection and public safety and the public’s right to peacefully protest”.

However, Assistant Chief Constable Mark Williams said officers were committed to tracing the person who flew the aircraft.

He added: “There are armed assets protecting the president – both from the US Secret Service and ourselves and the Met Police, who offer a close protection function as well.

“And there’s no doubt anybody who breaches security around him puts themselves in grave danger.

“On this occasion we could assess the situation and we realised there was no direct threat to the president however it’s absolutely something that is very serious.”

As well as playing host to one of the world’s most powerful men, Turnberry was the venue for a wedding on Saturday afternoon.

It is understood that the bride and groom – as well as their guests and the humanist celebrant who conducted the service – had to be security checked ahead of their big day.

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Image caption Supporters of Donald Trump gathered at the US Embassy in London on Saturday afternoon
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The baby Trump balloon that featured in protests in London on Friday was a feature of the Edinburgh protest

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-44829539