Trump falsely claims Queen reviewed honor guard for first time in 70 years

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U.S. President Donald Trump's move sparked criticism on social media after momentarily walking in front of the Queen during a reviewing of the troops at Windsor Castle, and generated headlines for British digital outlets.

(CNN) — U.S. President Donald Trump has wrongly claimed that Britain's Queen Elizabeth II reviewed her honor guard for the first time in 70 years during his visit to the United Kingdom last week.

Trump made the claim Tuesday as he read from a prepared statement at the White House in an attempt to rebuff fierce criticism over his comments at a news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, a day earlier.

"We met with the Queen, who is absolutely a terrific person, where she reviewed her honor guard for the first time in 70 years, they tell me," Trump said, without specifying who "they" were.

"We walked in front of the Honor Guard, and that was very inspiring to see and be with her. And I think the relationship, I can truly say, is a good one. But she was very, very inspiring indeed."

The Queen who has been on the throne for 66 years, not 70 regularly reviews a guard of honor from the Household Division.

Trump also faced social media criticism for walking in front of the Queen as the two inspected the guard of honor on Friday. After he came to a halt, Elizabeth caught up and gestured for him to continue, so that they walked along side by side.

The President's move to walk in front of the Queen didn't technically break royal protocol, according to royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams.

That said, Trump still looked like he "might as well have been wandering up and down a golf course," he said. "It proves he (Trump) doesn't bother to rehearse, because the thinks he doesn't need to."

This story was first published on CNN.com, "Trump falsely claims Queen reviewed honor guard for first time in 70 years."