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Sunday 1 October 2023 Dublin: 15°C
# trump visit
Donald Trump tells reporters Irish border 'will work out' after Brexit as he begins official two-day visit
Trump will stay at his Doonbeg golf resort in Clare for the next two nights. / YouTube

DONALD TRUMP HAS touched down in Shannon Airport to begin his first official visit to Ireland as US President.

Trump disembarked from Air Force One at the Co Clare airport shortly after 5pm this evening, and immediately held a joint press conference with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.

“It’s an honour to be in Ireland with my friend, and he’s doing a great job as prime minister,” he told reporters, referring to Varadkar.

A number of small protests took place near Shannon Airport before Trump touched down, and larger protests are expected to take place later this evening.

Trump’s visit followed an official visit to the United Kingdom, where he met outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May, and he told reporters that he would discuss “various things” about Brexit. / YouTube

The US President was optimistic when discussing what he thought will happen after Britain leaves the EU.

“I think it will all work out very well. Also for you with your wall, your border,” Trump said.

We have a border situation in the United States, and you have a border over here, but I hear it’s going to work out… it’s going to work out very well here.

“And again, both the military and the trade. It’s such a big factor, and we’re going to be discussing that very much.”

Varadkar said the priority was for there not to be a border, and Trump added that the way the Irish border operates now is what works best.

“You want to keep it that way, and I know a big point of contention – with respect to Brexit – is your border,” the US President said.

“And I’m sure it’s going to work out well, I know they’re going to focus heavily on it.”

Asked whether he considered that Brexit could be bad for Ireland, Trump repeated himself, saying that he felt the outcome would be positive.

“The big thing is going to be your border, and hopefully that’s going to work out,” he said.

I think it will work out. There are a lot of good minds thinking about how to do it, and it’s going to be just fine.
I think ultimately it could even be very very good for Ireland, but the border will work out.

‘I love Doonbeg’

Trump also dismissed suggestions that his visit was no more than an opportunity to visit his golf club in Doonbeg, where he will stay during his two nights here.

He told reporters that he was here because it was important to visit Ireland after he had travelled to the UK.

“I thought this would be the best place [to come],” he says. “I love Ireland. I love Doonbeg.”

Trump was quizzed on his thoughts about Ireland’s corporation tax rate, something that he has attacked in speeches before

“It’s a very low tax, I have to agree,” Trump said to a question by’s Christina Finn.

“Your prime minister has done a good job.”

The US President was also asked about comments by Michael D Higgins about Trump’s “pernicious” action on climate change.

However, he said that he hadn’t heard the comments, and defended his country’s environmental record since he became president.

Trump will head to his resort at Doonbeg later this evening, before departing to France for D-Day events tomorrow.

He will overnight at the Co Clare hotel again on Thursday night, before leaving Ireland on Friday.

With reporting from Sean Murray and Christina Finn.

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