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UK spending millions on security for Trump’s controversial visit

Muslim Times(Web Desk) -The British government is spending millions of pounds on security and policing during US President Donald Trump’s controversial visit to the country, where mass protests have greeted the unpopular US leader.

British police have mobilized their biggest operation for the arrival of Trump since the UK race riots in 2011.

Around 4,000 officers have been deployed to provide extra security in the locations that Trump is visiting with the total cost estimated to be at least 12 million pounds ($15.8 million).

Despite estimates of the policing costs being widely reported, with some figures giving a figure of as much as 30 million pounds ($40 million), the UK Home Office said the full costs of the policing for the bulk of Trump’s visit would only be known after it has finished.

The Home Office will pay the bill for the policing costs with central government giving money to the regional forces overseeing the policing.

A Home Office spokesperson told CNBC the Metropolitan Police or Thames Valley Police had yet to apply for this funding.

Trump’s travel to Scotland to play golf at one of his courses in Ayrshire could alone cost £5 million ($6.6 million) to police.

Trump’s security also includes 150 US special agents, several armored vehicles, nicknamed “Beasts,” for his motorcade and his armored helicopter, Marine One, according to British newspaper The Mirror.

The newspaper also said there would be rooftop snipers and counter-terrorism police deployed to keep the US president safe during the trip.

Police would have an overt and covert presence from both UK security personnel and visiting US agents, said Will Geddes.

Security personnel would try to keep Trump’s ground transportation to a minimum, “particularly when you have possible protests as we will do in the next couple of days,” Geddes, the managing director of the International Corporate Protection (ICP) group told CNBC.

Those opposing Trump’s visit on principle are not happy about UK taxpayers having to pay for the president’s visit.

Layla Moran, a Member of Parliament (MP) for the Oxford and Abingdon constituency, covered by the Thames Valley Police, said the US should pay for the policing costs incurred during Trump’s stay.

“It’s really not on that local police budgets should suffer as a result, or that the government should have to use taxpayers’ money to police a visit that the vast majority of people don’t want in the first place,” Moran said.

She said “scores” of residents in her constituency had contacted her to oppose the visit.

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