Donald Trump could be heading to Ireland and the UK this summer to act as a ‘Brexit troubleshooter’.
The US President thought is to be planning to visit both sides of the Irish border which is proving to be a major issue in talks between the EU and UK.
He has already confirmed that he will travel to the Republic to meet Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Sources say that his visit to the UK could be as early as June, which would avoid a clash with the royal wedding.
Former President Bill Clinton played a key role in the peace process with his visit to Belfast in 1995. Trump’s allies hope he can have a similar effect.
Trump received a hand-delivered invitation to Northern Ireland during St Patrick’s Day celebrations in the White House.
A source close to the President told The Sun on Sunday: “He absolutely loved it and wants to go as soon as possible.
“The letter came from a major figure in the Northern Irish community and it has made him even more enthusiastic to go as soon as possible.
“He’s on his travels in June so it possible that a visit could be squeezed in then.”
The President’s team have made discreet enquiries to establish whether senior figures would be available on both sides of the Irish border. He is also said to be keen to visit the golf club that he owns at Doonbeg, Co Clare.
It is unlikely he would meet with any senior British officials or royalty during the visit.
Both US and UK officials say there is no firm date for President Trump’s official UK tour, when he will be feted by the Queen and Prime Minister.
Officials hope that a hastily-planned trip would catch potential protesters off guard.
Mr Trump will become the eight US President to visit Ireland, following in the footsteps of John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.
Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcalling