A giant orange balloon depicting Trump as an angry baby in a nappy has been launched in London.
The 6-meter (19.7-feet) tall balloon was tethered to the ground over Parliament Square, beside the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, for two hours on Friday morning.
Trump has complained that the blimp – paid for by anti-Trump protestors – had made him “feel unwelcome.”
The president is in Britain from Thursday to Sunday for an informal “working” visit, where he has met Prime Minister Theresa May and is due to meet the Queen. Most of his engagements in Britain will be outside of London to avoid protesters.
Take a look at the balloon:
Here’s what the deflated balloon looked like before it was blown up.
It needed five canisters of helium to blow up the entire balloon, HuffPost UK reporter Chris York tweeted from Westminster.
Here’s what it looked like while being blown up…
… and here it is in its full glory. The angry, orange baby is wearing a nappy, fastened with a safety pin, and clutching a small phone — likely a reference to the US president’s Twitter habits.
The protesters in charge of blowing up and tethering the balloon wore jumpsuits and a red hat — in the same shade of Trump’s signature “Make America Great Again” hat — with the words “Trump Babysitter” emblazoned on the back. Here’s one of them speaking to London police.
They had launched a crowdfunding page for the project, describing Trump as “a big, angry baby with a fragile ego and tiny hands.”
As of Friday morning, the campaign had raised £31,115 ($US40,874) – £1,115 ($US1,465) more than its stated target.
The protesters also handed out stickers to people on the ground, which say: “Make Racists Unwelcome Again.”
— kassy (@kassy) July 13, 2018
Here’s what the blimp looked like after being tethered to the ground. It went up around 9:30 a.m. local time.
Source: ABC News
It looked a little menacing staring down at the people gathered below it. It hasn’t been allowed to fly more than 30 meters (98 feet) off the ground.
Source: Sky News
Here’s what it looks like from the other end of Parliament Square.
One of the president’s Osprey helicopters flew over it at one point, when Trump was on his way from London to Chequers, the British prime minister’s official countryside retreat. It’s not clear whether he saw the balloon from the skies, though.
Trump baby + Ospreys pic.twitter.com/m9Drz6EUTv
— Jake Hanrahan (@Jake_Hanrahan) July 13, 2018
Since the balloon has been tethered to the ground, it isn’t moving much — although many protesters and tourists have been coming and going to see it in person.
The balloon flew for about two hours, as scheduled, before protesters took it down again. Here’s what it looked like being deflated:
But this may not be the end of the Trump baby blimp: The protesters behind it raised so much money in their campaign they’re getting ready to take the blimp on a “world tour.” Details remain scant, however.
Trump Baby campaign
Trump is unlikely not going to be happy about that: The president said the blimp made him “feel unwelcome” and that there was “no reason for me to go to London.”
He told The Sun newspaper on Thursday: “I guess when they put out blimps to make me feel unwelcome, no reason for me to go to London.
“I used to love London as a city. I haven’t been there in a long time. But when they make you feel unwelcome, why would I stay there?”
London Mayor Sadiq Khan, who approved the demonstration, described it as a “peaceful protest.” He added on Friday: “Can you imagine if we limited freedom of speech because somebody’s feelings might be hurt.”
Source: BBC “Today” programme
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