Nicola Sturgeon told Donald Trump not to visit Scotland amid reports he is planning a transatlantic golf trip to avoid Joe Biden’s inauguration.
The Scottish First Minister said the president would be an unwelcome visitor as the country is once again plunged into lockdown.
Speaking at a daily coronavirus briefing, she said: “We’re not allowing people to come to Scotland without an essential purpose and that would apply to him just as it would apply to anybody else and coming to play golf isn’t what I would consider to be an essential purpose.”
Ms Sturgeon said she had no knowledge of Trump’s travel plans but added that she “hopes and expects” he will officially step down as expected on January 20.
Local media reports suggested that a US military Boeing 757 aircraft was scheduled to land at Prestwick Airport in Scotland on January 19, the day before Joe Biden’s inauguration.
The vice president and first lady often use the jet for official trips abroad, prompting speculation of an impromptu visit from the outgoing head of state.
Trump Turnberry, one of the president’s luxury golfing resorts in Scotland, lies off Prestwick on the Ayrshire coast.
White House spokesman Judd Deere said the source of the story has “no idea” about Mr Trump’s plans.
“When President Trump has an announcement about his plans for January 20 he will let you know,” he said.
Mr Trump has continued to contest the presidential elections in November but has so far failed to provide proof of widespread voter fraud, despite numerous unsuccessful legal actions in a bid to overturn the result.