06:12 GMT +320 September 2019
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    Snow covered mountains rise above the harbour and town of Tasiilaq, Greenland, 15 June 2018

    Danish Royals ‘Surprised’ Trump Postponed State Visit Over Refusal to Sell Greenland

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    Donald Trump, who recently announced his long-term interest in buying politically autonomous Greenland, decided to postpone his visit to Denmark after Danish officials called the discussion about selling the world's largest island “absurd”.

    Donald Trump’s intention to postpone his official visit to Denmark, originally slated for September, took the royal palace by surprise, Lene Balleby, Head of the Communications Department in the King’s House told The Associated Press on Wednesday, 21 August.

    Lene Balleby said that Trump’s decision came as “a surprise” to the royal family, but did not comment further on Trump’s reasoning behind changing his plans to visit Denmark. The US president was formally invited to visit the country on 2 and 3 September as a part of his European trip.

    Although there was no reaction from the Danish government on the subject of Trump’s change of plans, former prime minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt wrote on Twitter that it was “deeply insulting to the people of Greenland and Denmark”.

    At the same time, the chairman of Denmark’s main police union, Claus Oxfeldt commented that the third visit of the current US president had been planned for a long time and it was a “great frustration” to cancel the visit now.

    Donald Trump announced his intention to postpone the official visit on his Twitter account on Wednesday, arguing that his decision was motivated by Danish Prime Minister Metter Frederiksen’s disinterest in “discussing the purchase of Greenland”.  

    Trump had indicated his interest in buying Greenland for strategic purposes, but the Danish PM called Trump’s speculation about buying the entire island an "absurd discussion". 

    On Thursday 15 August, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported that Trump has been asking his senior advisors about Greenland’s geopolitical importance and the possible purchase of the island; these ambitions were, however, rebuked by the Greenland Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    ​Greenland is an autonomous region within the Kingdom of Denmark which, despite being larger than Mexico, is home to fewer than 60,000 people. It achieved home rule in 1979.

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    US, Denmark, Greenland, Mette Frederiksen, Donald Trump
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