A bizarrely one-sided diplomatic spat grew worse on Wednesday when President Donald Trump responded to the Danish prime minister rebuffing his interest in purchasing Greenland.
Trump scrapped a state visit to Denmark late Tuesday in response to Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen ruling out the possibility of selling Greeland to the United States.
Frederiksen called the proposal “absurd,” and Trump wasn’t happy about it.
“I looked forward to going, but I thought that the prime minister’s statement that it was an ‘absurd’ idea was nasty,” Trump told reporters outside the White House on Wednesday. “I thought it was an inappropriate statement.”
“All she had to do was say, ‘No, we wouldn’t be interested,'” he said.
The president went on to call it a “very not nice way of saying something,” and pointed to former President Harry Truman’s efforts to purchase the island in the late 1940s to argue the proposal was not unique to his administration.
Watch the video below, via ABC News:
President Trump responds to Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen's comment that his idea of buying Greenland is "absurd," saying her statement was "nasty" and a "very not nice way of saying something" https://t.co/eCSF7jW2bw pic.twitter.com/02RcIljbQE
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) August 21, 2019
After the Wall Street Journal published a report of his interest in acquiring the world’s largest island last week, the president confirmed his interest in purchasing Greenland while speaking with reporters on Sunday.
The president told reporters at the time it “would be nice” to purchase the island, but the issue was, “not number one on the burner, I can tell you that.”
But Trump struck a noticeably different tone on Tuesday when he took to Twitter to call off a planned visit to Denmark, painting the prime minister’s refusal to engage on the issue of selling Greenland at the forefront of the long-planned visit.
“The Prime Minister was able to save a great deal of expense and effort for both the United States and Denmark by being so direct,” Trump wrote. “I thank her for that and look forward to rescheduling sometime in the future!”