British MPs set Feb 20 for debate on Trump state visit

AFP , Tuesday 31 Jan 2017

British MPs will hold a debate on February 20 on US President Donald Trump's state visit to Britain after 1.6 million people signed a petition calling for the trip to be downgraded.

"Parliament will debate this petition on 20 February 2017," parliament said on its petition website.

The petition reads: "Donald Trump should be allowed to enter the UK in his capacity as head of the US Government, but he should not be invited to make an official State Visit because it would cause embarrassment to Her Majesty the Queen."

A counter petition calling for Trump to proceed with a full visit also passed the 100,000 threshold requiring MPs to consider it for debate, and it will be discussed at the same time.

Thousands took to the streets of Britain on Monday in protest following Trump's decision to ban citizens and refugees from seven mainly-Muslim countries.

Guests afforded a state visit are hosted by Queen Elizabeth II, who is the head of state, and they are seen as the highest expression of friendly ties between two countries.

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