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PA
World News

Revealed: gifts given to Trump from church leaders

by Press Association

Chinese President Xi Jinping gave Mr Trump and first lady Melania Trump the two most expensive presents in 2017: an ornate calligraphy display and presentation box worth 14,400 dollars (£10,931) and a porcelain dinnerware set that includes plates imprinted with the pink house at Mr Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort worth 16,250 dollars (£12,336).

Like all of the other gifts to Mr Trump, his wife, daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner, those were turned over to the National Archives.

The Saudis and Gulf Arab states gave at least 24,120 dollars (£18,310) in gifts to the Trumps.

Those included a 6,400 dollar (£4,858) ruby and emerald pendant necklace from Saudi Arabia's
King Salman, a gold-plated fighter jet model worth 4,850 dollars (£3,681) from Bahrain's crown prince, a 3,700 dollar (£2,808) bronze statue of three oryx from the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, a set of gold-plated Kuwaiti coins worth 1,610 dollars (£1,222) from Kuwait's emir and "royal" perfume in a reptile skin carrying case worth 1,260 dollars (£956) from the deputy prime minister of Oman.

Others in the Middle East did not stint when it came to presents for the first family, according to the 64-page list compiled by the State Department's Office of Protocol, which is to be published in the Federal Register on Thursday.

The Trumps received a personalised hardcover book of Psalms worth 4,500 dollars (£3,415) from the rabbi in charge of the Western Wall in Jerusalem, a gold and diamond necklace and similar pendant from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre valued at 5,800 dollars (£4,402) and a mother-of-pearl Nativity scene worth 4,200 dollars (£3,188) from the Greek Orthodox patriarch of Jerusalem.

Even Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, before the Trump administration started a series of moves to downgrade US relations with the Palestinians, was generous.

He gave Mr Trump and the first lady a copy of a neo-Byzantine Nativity scene, a half-length portrait of Mrs Trump and photograph with a total estimated value of 6,770 dollars (£5,139), according to the list.

Other world leaders who have fallen from Mr Trump's favour were among the 2017 gift-givers, including Germany's
Angela Merkel, France's Emmanuel Macron and Canada's
Justin Trudeau.

Mrs Merkel gave the Trumps Mont Blanc pens and paper worth 5,264 dollars (£3,995); Mr Macron a map from 1783 of the United States worth 1,100 dollars (£835) and Mr Trudeau a sandstone statue of a male lion wearing a crown valued at 450 dollars (£341).

Some gifts seemed designed to appeal to the president's ego.

Those included an 1,880 dollar (£1,427) gemstone portrait of Mr Trump in front of an American flag from Vietnam's prime minister, and a photo album titled President Donald J Trump in New York from Poland's president that contains black and white photographs of the president and polychrome photos of Trump Tower and was valued at 850 dollars (£645).

Clothing, art, jewellery and accessories were favourite gifts to the first lady from foreign leaders.

The wife of Japan's prime minister gave her a 2,200 dollar (£1,670) pair of Mikimoto diamond and pearl earrings and a 3,000 dollar (£2,277) gold and acrylic painting, while Italy's prime minister gave her a 3,400 dollar (£2,580) Ferragamo handbag.

Belgium's prime minister and his partner gave Mrs Trump two handbags from the designer Delvaux worth 1,020 dollars (£774) and 2,273 dollars (£1,725).

Ivanka Trump also got a Delvaux handbag from the Belgian leader that was worth 1,023 dollars (£776).

Meanwhile, the Saudi government gave Melania and Ivanka Trump embroidered garments, including at least one abaya, worth 1,500 dollars (£1,138).

Mr Kushner, Ivanka Trump's husband, reported receiving only six gifts from foreign officials in 2017, the most valuable of which was a 3,630 dollar (£2,755) fountain pen given to him by Jordan's king.

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