WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump on Wednesday expressed offence over the Danish prime minister’s statement that selling Greenland was “absurd,” adding that a U.S. purchase of the autonomous Danish territory was just an idea.
“I thought the prime minister’s statement was … nasty,” Trump told reporters at the White House before departing for a veterans’ event in Kentucky. “It was an inappropriate statement.”
Instead of calling the idea “absurd,” Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen should have simply told him her country was not interested in a sale, he said.
Frederiksen’s comments spurred Trump on Tuesday to cancel his September visit to Denmark.
Trump confirmed to reporters on Sunday he had recently discussed the possibility of purchasing the world’s largest island, though he said such a move was not an immediate priority.
White House Economic Adviser Larry Kudlow has said Greenland is a strategic place and has a lot of valuable minerals.
Trump said on Tuesday the United States has long pondered purchasing Greenland, and that he considered it a good idea.
(Reporting by Jeff Mason; writing by Lisa Lambert; editing by Tom Brown and Chris Reese)