The US President was meant to visit a cemetery in Belleau, France. American soldiers killed in the First World War are buried at the cemetery. However, the White House claimed bad weather had grounded the presidential helicopter.
Angry at the no-show, defence minister Tobias Ellwood, who is an army veteran himself, attacked Trump’s decision.
He tweeted: “As a duel National I’m sorry to read this.
“Rain was a regular feature on the Western Front.
“Thankfully it did not prevent our brave heroes from doing their job.”
The grandson of World War Two leader Sir Winston Churchill also did not hold back in his criticism of the US President.
Sir Nicholas Soames, a serving MP, wrote on Twitter: “They died with their face to the foe and that pathetic inadequate Donald Trump couldn’t even defy the weather to pay his respects to the fallen.”
Trump sent a delegation that included White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, a retired general, and General Joe Dunford, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in his place.
The cemetery was located just a two-hour drive east of Paris.
Trump arrived in France on Friday ahead of a weekend of events to mark 100 years since the end of World War One
Tweeting after his arrival, the President wrote: “I am in Paris getting ready to celebrate the end of World War One.
“Is there anything better to celebrate than the end of a war, in particular that one, which was one of the bloodiest and worst of all time?”
The President is still expected to attend the centenary Armistice Day commemoration in Paris today.
More than 70 heads of state and government will attend the service at the Arc de Triomphe.
Source : EXPRESS