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London mayor warns Trump that Britons will voice their ‘freedom of speech’ during his UK visit

Shafi Musaddique; Reporter
Key Points
  • London Mayor Sadiq Khan calls on Britons to show their "liberal values" and voice their "freedom of speech."
  • The U.S. ambassador confirms that Trump will "definitely" visit London in July.
  • Trump and London's Muslim mayor have a long-standing feud.
London mayor warns Trump that Britons will voice ‘freedom of speech’
London mayor warns Trump that Britons will voice ‘freedom of speech’

London Mayor Sadiq Khan's war of words with Donald Trump escalated after he called on Britons to take to the streets in a show of "freedom of speech" the president's visit.

Trump is set to visit the U.K. in July, it was announced on Thursday. He had previously canceled a trip to Britain over concerns in Washington that his visit would prompt protests.

"If he comes to London, President Trump will experience an open and diverse city that has always chosen unity over division and hope over fear," Khan tweeted Thursday. "He will also no doubt see that Londoners hold their liberal values of freedom of speech very dear."

Speaking to British radio station LBC on Friday, U.S. Ambassador Woody Johnson confirmed that Trump would "definitely be coming to London."

Khan is the first Muslim mayor of any major Western capital city.

Khan and Trump have a history of exchanging barbs.

In November, Khan said Trump was not welcome in London after the president used his Twitter account to share anti-Islam videos from a U.K. far-right group.

In June, Trump lashed out at Khan for his response to a terror attack in which eight people died. Khan criticized Trump in January 2017 over his ban on travelers from Muslim countries, despite Trump suggesting that he would consider Khan an "exception."

Donald Trump (l) and London Mayor Sadiq Khan (r).
Getty Images

And, prior to the 2016 U.S presidential election, Khan told British broadcasters that he hoped Hillary Clinton "trounces" Trump and said that he would be happy to educate Trump about Islam.

Protest plans ahead of Trump's July 13 visit have already commenced, with petitions and online groups forming.

Maz Saleem, from Stand Up to Trump, said: "Donald Trump is an open racist and sexist, a volatile and dangerous character who seems set on taking the West into further wars. Together we will put on a massive united show of opposition to him if Theresa May goes ahead with plans for a visit."