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UK PM May Calls on Trump for Deeper Special Relationship | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Prime Minister Theresa May greets troops as she visits 1st Battalion The Mercian Regiment (Cheshire, Worcesters and Foresters, and Staffords) at their barracks at Bulford Camp on September 29, 2016 near Salisbury, England. REUTERS/Matt Cardy

British Prime Minister Theresa May called on United States President Donald Trump on Thursday to build a stronger “special relationship” between Britain and the United States to withstand new, modern-day threats, Reuters reported.

Seeking to land a trade deal — with the new U.S. president to bolster her hand in divorce negotiations with the European Union, May said both countries shared many values and that contrary to his statements that NATO was “obsolete,” Trump had told her he was committed to the U.S.-led military alliance.

But there may be sticking points in Friday’s talks – May said she condemned the use of torture and would stick to UK policy, suggesting Britain may not accept intelligence that could have come from such methods that Trump could reintroduce.

May’s visit to the United States is a boost to her message that Britain’s departure from the European Union will help her build a more “global Britain,” and her aides have underlined the depth of her government’s engagement with Trump.

“What’s going to be important is having the opportunity to actually sit down with President Trump and talk to him face to face, about the interests we share, about the special relationship, about the joint challenges we both face,” May told reporters on a government plane before landing in Philadelphia.

Pressed on whether Britain’s often cautious prime minister would get on with the “brash” U.S. president, May said: “Haven’t you ever noticed … sometimes opposites attract?”

Before meeting Trump at the White House, May will meet Republican members of Congress at a retreat in Philadelphia on Thursday where she will talk about shared values.