Donald Trump Says Dealing With Putin Will Be Easier Than His UK Visit

    A Downing Street spokesperson downplayed Trump's comments.

    President Donald Trump has caused a further political headache for Theresa May by praising Boris Johnson and describing the UK as "a situation with turmoil" ahead of his upcoming visit this week.

    Trump made the comments on Tuesday as he prepared for a trip to Brussels for a NATO meeting, and comes as the prime minister faces a series of resignations over her Brexit agreement, which has raised doubts about her future.

    Johnson, the most high-profile of Monday's resignations, said he was stepping down as foreign secretary over the government's EU exit strategy, warning that his vision of Brexit was "dying, suffocated by needless self-doubt".

    Speaking to reporters at a press conference at the White House, Trump said he was expecting "an interesting time in the UK and an interesting time at NATO".

    "So I have NATO, I have the UK – that's a situation with turmoil, and I have Putin," he continued.

    “Frankly, Putin may be the easiest of them all, who would think? Who would think? But the UK certainly – they certainly have a lot of things going on.”

    However, a Downing Street spokesperson downplayed Trump's comments, saying that May was "looking forward to showing the president the UK" and was "confident he will leave with a very positive impression".

    When asked what the prime minister thought of Trump's comment that meeting with Putin would be easier than his visit to the UK, the spokesperson said that he thought the comment had been "delivered in humour".

    Trump had also hinted to reporters that he may meet with the former foreign secretary during his visit to the UK.

    “Boris Johnson is a friend of mine, he’s been very, very nice to me, very supportive,” he said. “And I maybe will speak to him when I get over there. I like Boris Johnson, I’ve always liked him.”

    May's spokesperson said it was "positive for the UK that the former foreign secretary has a good relationship with the President," stressing the importance of the "special relationship" between the two countries.

    He added that Johnson's replacement foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt was "looking forward to forging his own relationships with US compatriots".

    It has been a brutal few days for May following last weekend's summit at Chequers, which also led to the resignation of Brexit secretary David Davis, several government ministers, and two Conservative party vice chairs.

    Questions have been raised about the likelihood of a challenge to May's leadership, which could throw Britain's Brexit plans into chaos.

    Trump will also be met widespread protests over his policies, including a blimp effigy, which will fly over the capital.