The British government on Monday stood by its ambassador to the U.S., Kim Darroch, after a recent leak revealed diplomatic messages lambasting the Trump administration as “inept” and “incompetent.”
“We have made clear to the U.S. how unfortunate this leak is,” the British government said in a statement, according to HuffPost UK. “The selective extracts leaked do not reflect the closeness of, and the esteem in which we hold, the relationship.”
The government also added that it had “underlined the importance of Ambassadors being able to provide honest, unvarnished assessments of the politics in their country.”
The British government noted its ambassador “continues to have the Prime Minister’s full support.”
The unprecedented leak of recent official diplomatic cables, reported by The Mail On Sunday, revealed Darroch had described Trump as “inept” and at risk of ending his presidency in “disgrace.”
President Donald Trump took aim at Darroch on Sunday, saying the ambassador had “not served the U.K. well.”
“We’ve had our little ins and outs with a couple of countries, and I would say that the U.K., and the ambassador has not served the U.K. well, I can tell you that,” Trump told reporters when asked about Darroch’s remarks.
Trump on Monday intensified his criticism of the British ambassador, saying in a series of tweets that “we will no longer deal with him.”
“I do not know the Ambassador, but he is not liked or well thought of within the U.S.,” Trump tweeted. “We will no longer deal with him.”
Trump has, in fact, met Darroch several times, including on a recent trip to Britain, according to CNN.
Later on Monday, Darroch was disinvited from a dinner with Trump, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and the emir of Qatar.
The memos detailed by The Mail On Sunday included communications from 2017 until now.
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt ― who is also in the race to become prime minister after Theresa May ― told reporters during a news conference Monday that there would be an inquiry into the leak and “very serious consequences” for whoever was behind it.
British Trade Minister Liam Fox told BBC radio he would apologize to Trump’s daughter Ivanka, whom he was expected to meet Monday during his visit to Washington.
“I will be apologizing for the fact that either our civil service or elements of our political class have not lived up to the expectations that either we have or the United States has about their behavior, which in this particular case has lapsed in a most extraordinary and unacceptable way,” he said.
This article has been updated with comment from Trade Minister Liam Fox and to note that Darroch was disinvited from a dinner with Trump.