Washington DC [USA]: United States President Donald Trump on Thursday cancelled a trip by the US delegation that was supposed to attend the next week’s annual World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos, citing the ongoing partial government shutdown.
The White House said that Trump took the decision to scrap the delegation’s visit in the interests of the 800,000 federal workers who have been affected by the shutdown. “Out of consideration for the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay and to ensure his team can assist as needed, President Trump has cancelled his delegation’s trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland,” The Hill quoted White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders as saying.
On Tuesday, the White House had announced that it would send a scaled-back delegation to the WEF summit in Davos, which is slated to be held from January 22 to 25. The delegation was set to be led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and comprised Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and deputy chief of staff Chris Liddell.
On January 10, Trump announced that he would be not participating in the WEF meeting amid the feud with the Democrats over the funding of his proposed border wall. “Because of the Democrats intransigence on Border Security and the great importance of Safety for our Nation, I am respectfully cancelling my very important trip to Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum. My warmest regards and apologies to the @WEF!” he tweeted.
The cancellation of the US’ delegation trip to the Swiss alpine resort came a few hours after Trump scrapped House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s planned overseas visit to Brussels, Egypt and Afghanistan citing the shutdown. In a letter addressed to Pelosi, Trump said that the House Speaker’s seven-day visit to Brussels, Afghanistan and Egypt, which he dismissed it as a “public relations event”, will be rescheduled after the shutdown is “over.” The shutdown, that has now entered its 27th day, was triggered on December 22 last year by a lack of consensus between Democratic lawmakers and the US President on the $5.7 billion funding for the wall on the border with Mexico, which was one of Trump’s electoral promises. The ongoing partial government shutdown is the longest in the history of the US.