By Staff writer
President's sons given US State Security protection during their trip to the UAE
US taxpayers paid more than $16,000 for security for the visit of US President Donald Trump's eldest sons Donald Trump Jr and Eric Trump to Dubai.
The sons were in the emirate in February for the official opening of the Trump-branded golf course and clubhouse in Dubai, the first Trump property project launched since their father's inauguration.
NBC News reports that the cost of having Secret Service accompany the brothers during their brief trip was $16,738.36. The US broadcaster outlined how the US taxpayer has paid $122,263.88 for security for members of the Trump family since the start of the year. The costs include hotel bills for the US Secret Service and State Department personnel.
During their visit to Dubai, Donald Jnr praised the development of the UAE, a close US ally that is also a global trade, transport and tourism hub.
"To see the incredible vision Sheikh Mohammed has been able to put forward for this country is truly awe-inspiring," he said, referring Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed.
"As a developer, which lets us be somewhat artists at times, it is truly incredible to be part of that vision."
A ceremony featuring fireworks and a classical music ensemble marked the opening of the project announced by the Trump Organisation and Dubai-listed developer Damac Properties in 2013.
President Trump's sons also praised their close relationship with Hussain Sajwani, chairman of Damac Properties, in their remarks.
Eric Trump said Sajwani was "a great friend" with a "truly amazing family".
"We are going to have a lot of fun years together and this is just the beginning of those days," Eric Trump said.
The Trump International Gulf Club Dubai is part of a 42 million square foot wider development known as Damac Hills, according to Damac.
Sajwani said it was the first new golf course to open in the city in "many years". Damac pays a licensing fee to the Trump Organization to use the Trump brand.