UPDATE 1-Trump says his meeting with grieving British family was 'beautiful' but 'sad'




  • In US
  • 2019-10-16 17:32:14Z
  • By Reuters

(Updates with Trump comment, parents' U.S. TV interview on Wednesday, changes dateline to WASHINGTON)

WASHINGTON, Oct 16 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday his meeting with the parents of a man killed when his motorbike collided in England with a car driven by a U.S. diplomat's wife, was "sad" but "beautiful," but the family said it felt pressure to allow the American woman to join the session.

Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn, parents of Harry Dunn, the 19-year-old who died in the August crash, had been invited on Tuesday to the White House, where they said they learned that Anne Sacoolas, the woman fled Britain after the fatal crash, was in the building.

During the meeting, Trump asked the parents two or three times to meet with Sacoolas, Dunn told "CBS This Morning," but they declined, saying they wanted her to return to Britain to meet with them.

Dunn's parents said Trump had been responsive during their meeting but the planned encounter with Sacoolas had come as a bombshell. "There was a bit of pressure, but we stuck to our guns," he said.

Later Trump told reporters he had expressed condolences on behalf of the United States.

The meeting was "beautiful in a certain way" and "very sad, to be honest," said Trump, speaking to reporters at the White House on Wednesday ahead of an Oval Office meeting with Italian President Sergio Mattarella.

"I offered to bring the person in question in, and they weren't ready for it," the president said. "I know the people were lovely, they were very nice and they were desperately sad."

Trump suggested that the idea of bringing Dunn's parents and Sacoolas together came from British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

"I spoke with Boris," Trump told reporters. "He asked me if I'd do that, and I did it."

The parents want Sacoolas, who left Britain under a disputed claim of diplomatic immunity, to return to England to speak to the police. Through her lawyers, Sacoolas said she was "devastated" and was willing to meet Dunn's family.

"We've said all along we are willing to meet her, but it has to be with therapists and mediators. And that's not just for us; it's for her as well," Charles told CBS. "To be thrown into a room together with no prior warning, that's not good for her mental health, and it's certainly not good for ours."

Harry Dunn died in August in the accident near RAF Croughton, an air force base in Northamptonshire in central England used by the U.S. military.

While Trump and his national security adviser, Robert O'Brien, had ruled out Sacoolas returning to Britain, Charles said Trump had taken her hand and promised to try to look at the issue from another angle.

The Dunn family's lawyer, Mark Stephens, told BBC Radio that offer had left open the opportunity for a political solution.

"We have said for a long time the family needs to meet, they need to meet in private, away from the media and not curated by politicians, spies or indeed lawyers," he said.

"Most sensible folk and not a nincompoop in a hurry would understand that." (Reporting by Steve Holland in Washington, Barbara Goldberg in New York and Michael Holden in London; Writing by Frank McGurty; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)

COMMENTS

More Related News

Trump says he
Trump says he's 'too busy' to watch impeachment inquiry hearing, but he's tweeting about it

"He's not watching - he's working," White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said. Trump is in fact in the Oval Office, which is not outfitted with TVs

UF students threaten impeachment for Trump Jr.
UF students threaten impeachment for Trump Jr.'s visit

The student body president of the University of Florida is facing an impeachment threat for spending $50,000 in student fees to bring Trump's eldest son and his girlfriend to campus. Members of the university's student senate filed a resolution on Tuesday to impeach Student Body President Michael Murphy

'A particularly inappropriate time': Trump welcomes Turkey's Erdogan despite Syria attack

Trump's meeting with Recep Tayyip Erdogan could be a hornet's nest, provoking bipartisan anger over Trump's decision to withdraw troops from Syria.

Split Supreme Court appears ready to allow Trump to end DACA
Split Supreme Court appears ready to allow Trump to end DACA

Sharply at odds with liberal justices, the Supreme Court's conservative majority seemed ready Tuesday to allow the Trump administration to abolish protections that permit 660,000 immigrants to work in the U.S., free from the threat of deportation. President Donald Trump said on Twitter that DACA

Judge dismisses Trump lawsuit against NY officials, House committee over taxes
Judge dismisses Trump lawsuit against NY officials, House committee over taxes

A federal judge on Monday issued another blow to President Donald Trump and his ongoing effort to avoid having his tax records turned over to Congress. U.S. Judge Carl Nichols granted a motion to dismiss a lawsuit that Trump filed in July over the TRUST Act in New York, which gave Congress the authority to retrieve tax information from New York residents.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: US