Donald Trump has canceled his trip to Denmark and postponed his meeting with the Danish prime minister after she said that Greenland was not for sale. Speaking on Sunday during a trip to Greenland, Mette Frederiksen called purchasing the island, a semi-autonomous Danish territory, “an absurd discussion”. The idea has come up before: the US offered Denmark $100m to buy Greenland in 1946 after the idea of a land swap with Alaska was rejected.
Donald Trump has confirmed he is considering an attempt to buy Greenland for strategic reasons, though he said the idea is “not No1 on the burner”. The US president’s interest, reported earlier this week, was greeted internationally with widespread hilarity but with indignation in Greenland and Denmark. The government of the semi-autonomous Danish territory insisted it was not for sale. The Danish prime minister called any discussion of a sale “absurd”.
A massive iceberg drifting off Greenland has triggered fears of flooding if it breaks up, leading the authorities to evacuate a high-risk zone. The authorities have urged residents of the Innaarsuit island settlement with houses on a promontory to move away from the shore over fears that the 100-metre (over 300 feet) high iceberg, which was spotted on Thursday, could swamp the area.
The Danish prime minister has said she is surprised and disappointed that Donald Trump has called off his planned visit to the country over Copenhagen’s refusal to sell Greenland to the US. Trump told reporters at the White House later: “I thought the prime minister’s statement that it was an absurd idea was nasty.” Villy Søvndal, a former foreign minister, said the decision “confirms that Donald Trump is a narcissistic fool”.