Trump says Brexit has gone 'badly' because Theresa May ignored his advice

Leo Varadkar listens as Donald Trump holds court in the Oval Office

US President Donald Trump said on Thursday that he was "surprised at how badly" Brexit has gone and that UK Prime Minister Theresa May ignored his advice on how to better handle negotiations.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar of Ireland, President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, and Vice President Mike Pence pose for a photo during the Shamrock Bowl Presentation with Prime Minister of Ireland Leo Varadkar on March 14, 2019 at the White House in Washington, DC.

Speaking ahead of a private meeting with Mr Varadkar, the USA president said Brexit was "tearing countries apart". I gave the Prime Minister my ideas on how to negotiate it and I think you would have been successful.

On the prospect of another referendum, Mr Trump said: "I don't think another vote would be possible because it would be very unfair to the people that won".

The president, who earlier set out his hopes for a "large scale" US-UK trade deal, added that: "I'm not sure anybody knows" what was happening with Brexit. Irish leaders say a new formal border would put profitable commerce at risk and invoke the ghosts of the bloody conflicts in Northern Ireland known as the Irish Troubles.

"Great commitment amongst the United States administration to help Northern Ireland".

"It is really great to have the prime minister of Ireland with us", Trump said, before stating that he's becoming "fast friends" with the Taoiseach. Varadkar opposes Britain's European Union exit and expressed concern about how such a move would affect Northern Ireland.

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"I will be coming at some point this year", he said. "But I think it could've been negotiated in a different manner, frankly", he said.

Trump also lamented he was "surprised at how badly it has all gone from the standpoint of negotiating". On Thursday, two weeks ahead of the scheduled departure from the EU, British lawmakers overwhelmingly backed May's motion to extend the Brexit deadline amid disagreements over the withdrawal plan.

On Thursday MPs voted 413 to 202 - a majority of 211 for Mrs May to ask the European Union for a delay to Brexit.

"If they don't talk to us we are going to do something pretty severe economically".

"It's just a great place", he added.

"But it will all work out, everything does, one way or the other".

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