US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrived at Buckingham Palace for a three-day State visit. But it's Trump’s fist bump handshake with the Queen that has everyone talking.

By Ian Horswill


Posted on June 4, 2019

US President Donald Trump is known for his unusual handshakes but his greeting with Queen Elizabeth on his arrival in London at the start of a three-day tour is his strangest one yet.

Trump and First Lady Melania Trump have arrived in the UK with the culmination being the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Portsmouth on the UK’s south coast.

The US President and First Lady were met by Prince Charles when the pair arrived at Buckingham Palace, London, on helicopter Marine One after a flight from the US on Air Force One.

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall crossed the lawn to shake hands with President Trump and his wife before guiding them upstairs to where 93-year-old Queen Elizabeth was waiting.

It was at their meeting that President Trump’s handshake raised eyebrows.

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Today marks the start of the #USStateVisit. President Trump and Mrs. Melania Trump were met by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall on the lawn before being welcomed by The Queen on the West Terrace of Buckingham Palace. Upon arrival a Royal Salute was fired by The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery from Green Park (41 guns) and at the Tower of London by The Honourable Artillery Company (62 guns). The Guard of Honour, found by Nijmegen Company, Grenadier Guards, gave a Royal Salute before the US National Anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner, was played by the Band of the Regiment. The President @realdonaldtrump accompanied by The Prince of Wales, inspected the Guard of Honour watched by The Queen, the First Lady and The Duchess of Cornwall.

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The Press Association photographer Victoria Jones who took the picture, hashtagged the photograph “fist bump”.

His unconventional handshake appeared to curl around the Queen’s fingers in an awkward half-handshake, half thumb war embrace.

The US President was accused of being ignorant during his visit in July last year when he kept her waiting 10 minutes, he shook her hand instead of bowing and turned his back on her for a few seconds.

However, the US President seemed to be enjoying himself this time.

The ceremonial welcome included a private lunch and a guided tour of the Royal Collection.

Then there was a State Dinner at Buckingham Palace where the Queen addressed the US President’s visit.

“Visits by American presidents always remind us of the close and long-standing friendship between the United Kingdom and the United States,” the Queen said, adding she was “glad that we have another opportunity to demonstrate the immense importance that both our countries attach to our relationship”.

She spoke of the 75th anniversary of D-Day, noting, “On that day and many occasions since, the armed forces of both our countries fought side by side to defend our cherished values of liberty and democracy.”

The Queen added that the anniversary “reminds us of all that our countries have achieved together”.

Citing Trump’s Scottish ancestry, the Queen reminded the President that he too has a “particular connection to this country”.

“Mr President, as we look to the future, I’m confident that our common values and shared interests will continue to unite us. Tonight, we celebrate an alliance that has helped to ensure the safety and prosperity of both our peoples for decades, and which I believe will endure for many years to come,” she said.

Trump was equally effusive of Queen Elizabeth in his speech.

“This evening, we thank God for the brave sons of the United Kingdom and the United States who defeated the Nazis and the Nazi regime and liberated millions from tyranny,” he said. “The bond between our nations was forever sealed in that great crusade.

“As we honour our shared victory and heritage, we affirm the common values that will unite us long into future – freedom, sovereignty, self-determination, the rule of law and reverence for the rights given to us by Almighty God.

“From the Second World War to today, Her Majesty has stood as a constant symbol of these priceless traditions. She has embodied the spirit of dignity, duty and patriotism that beats proudly in every British heart.

“On behalf of all Americans, I offer a toast to the eternal friendship of our people, the vitality of our nations and to the long-cherished and truly remarkable reign of Her Majesty, the Queen. Thank you.”

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‘Tonight we celebrate an alliance that has helped to ensure the safety and prosperity of both our peoples for decades, and which I believe will endure for many years to come.’ This evening, a State Banquet was held in the Ballroom at Buckingham Palace in honour of the State Visit of the President and Mrs Trump. In her speech at the banquet, The Queen spoke of the mutual aims and beliefs of both countries, saying, ‘Mr President, as we look to the future, I am confident that our common values and shared interests will continue to unite us.’ The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, The Duke of York and The Earl and Countess of Wessex also attended the banquet. 📸 Press Association

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President Trump and the outgoing UK Prime Minister Theresa May will have breakfast at St James’s Palace in central London tomorrow with 10 major business chief executives from the UK and 10 chief executives from the US.

Among the business leaders expected to attend are the BAE Systems chairman, Sir Roger Carr, National Grid’s chief executive, John Pettigrew, GSK’s Emma Walmsley and Jes Staley of Barclays. Rakesh Kapoor, the outgoing chief executive of the consumer goods company Reckitt Benckiser, is also on the list.

US business leaders are expected to include the Lockheed Martin chief executive, Marillyn Hewson, and the head of Estée Lauder UK and Ireland, Philippe Warnery. Richard Timperlake, the vice-president for European sales at the software company Splunk, has also been invited.