Iceland's Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdottir, right, meets with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at Thingvellir National Park, about 40km from Reykjavik in Iceland, Monday Aug. 19, 2019. Merkel met with Jakobsdottir on Monday ahead of a meeting with Nordic leaders in Reykjavik on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Egill Bjarnason)

Iceland's leader won't be around to welcome Pence

August 21, 2019 - 1:58 pm

REYKJAVIK, Iceland (AP) — Iceland's leader has announced she will skip U.S. Vice President Mike Pence's visit to her Nordic nation, opting instead to keep a prior commitment to attend a trade union conference in Sweden.

Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdottir said she's planned for months to give the keynote speech for the Council of Nordic Trade Unions' annual meeting in Malmo, Sweden on Sept. 3, the day before Pence's arrival. She has no plans to return the following day for his visit.

She told Icelandic broadcaster RUV on Tuesday that the visit "has been bouncing a lot around the calendar so that it has been very difficult to organize oneself around it." Her office Wednesday confirmed she hadn't changed her mind.

The decision was made before President Donald Trump canceled plans to visit Denmark.

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