Trump meets Queen Elizabeth to kick off UK visit

President TrumpDonald John TrumpCNN's Camerota clashes with Trump's immigration head over president's tweet LA Times editorial board labels Trump 'Bigot-in-Chief' Trump complains of 'fake polls' after surveys show him trailing multiple Democratic candidates MORE and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpDesigner defends Melania Trump statue: 'People may laugh but the context still resonates' Melania Trump heading to West Virginia to discuss opioid epidemic Wood-carved statue of Melania Trump erected in her Slovenian hometown MORE were greeted at Buckingham Palace on Monday by Queen Elizabeth II, kicking off the president’s three-day state visit to the United Kingdom.

The queen shook hands with both Trumps against the backdrop of a gun salute before the trio walked into the palace in London, where the first couple is expected to have a private lunch with the queen.

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Before greeting the queen, President Trump inspected a group of Grenadier Guards wearing their traditional red tunics and bearskin hats in the palace garden, part of the pomp surrounding a state visit. 

The queen presented the Trumps with gifts, giving the president a first-edition abridged version of Sir Winston Churchill's "The Second World War," and giving the first lady a “specially commissioned silver box" designed to evoke the ceiling of Buckingham Palace's music room.

Trump is expected to have tea with Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla later Monday.

Trump’s meeting with the royals should largely avoid the hot-button issues that will dominate the later part of the president’s visit, such as his meeting with Prime Minister Theresa MayTheresa Mary MayTheresa May calls Trump remarks 'completely unacceptable' British police probe leak of diplomatic memos Trump changes tune on ex-British ambassador: 'We wish him well' MORE days before she leaves office.

The president publicly criticized May’s Brexit strategy, stopped just short of endorsing Conservative Party politician Boris Johnson as her successor, called comments Duchess Meghan MarkleMeghan MarkleOvernight Energy: Democrats to vote on 2020 climate debate | Green groups sue to stop Keystone XL construction | States sue EPA for tougher rules on asbestos Prince Harry, Meghan Markle promote environmental activists: 'There is a ticking clock to protect our planet' Teen neo-Nazis sentenced to prison for encouraging right-wing terrorism in UK MORE made about him “nasty” and blasted London Mayor Sadiq Khan as a “stone cold loser.”

Even before those controversial comments, Trump’s state visit stirred widespread angst in the U.K. capital. He is expected to face thousands of demonstrators during his visit to London.

--Updated 10:05 a.m.