Joe Biden to make UK state visit after 'friendly' chat with King Charles - but only First Lady will attend Coronation

6 April 2023, 06:10 | Updated: 6 April 2023, 06:15

The date of the state visit has not been confirmed
The date of the state visit has not been confirmed. Picture: Getty
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

Joe Biden has accepted an invitation from King Charles for a state visit to the UK, the White House has confirmed.

The King invited the president to the UK in a conversation on Tuesday, the White House said, with Mr Biden telling the monarch that he would not be attending his Coronation.

Instead, the president's wife and US First Lady Jill Biden will attend.

The last US president to be invited to a UK Coronation was Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953, when Queen Elizabeth II made her formal oath at Westminster Abbey.

Britain's Prince Charles, left, greets President of the United States Joe Biden ahead of their bilateral meeting during the Cop26 summit
Britain's Prince Charles, left, greets President of the United States Joe Biden ahead of their bilateral meeting during the Cop26 summit. Picture: Alamy

"The president was appreciative of the offer by the King and looks forward to that state visit," White House spokesperson Karine Jean-Pierre said on Wednesday.

Ms Jean-Pierre told reporters that Mr Biden spoke on the phone with the King for around 30 minutes.

"He congratulated the King on his upcoming coronation, they have a very friendly conversation, he has a good relationship with the King," she said.

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"He talked about how he enjoyed visiting the Queen back in 2021 when he and the first lady came to Windsor and he hoped to visit again soon.

"Actually, during the call, the King offered for him to come and do a state visit which the president accepted.

"So they will see each other again very soon... there are many things that they both care about, key shared values, key shared issues, that they want to continue to discuss like climate change."

Though there is no specific timeline for Mr Biden's state visit, it is expected to happen "in the near future".

Joe Biden will visit Ireland next week
Joe Biden will visit Ireland next week. Picture: Getty

Mr Biden is set to speak TDs, senators and MEPs in the Dail chamber as part of a state visit to Ireland next week, coinciding with the 25th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement.

The president's trip will begin in Belfast before moving onto Dublin.

He will also visit County Louth and County Mayo, where his family were from.

"The number one objective of President Biden's visit to Ireland is to welcome a son of Ireland home, to welcome home a great Irish American president and to cement and strengthen the really good relationship that we have at the moment with the US," Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said.

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