Donald Trump interrupted a phone call with the new Irish prime minister to compliment a female journalist's smile.

Trump was speaking to Leo Varadkar, and as members of the Irish press were leaving he said: "We have a lot of your Irish press watching us."

He then singled out Caitriona Perry of RTE, asking where she was from before saying "she has a nice smile on her face, so I bet she treats you well".

On Twitter, Perry described it as a "bizarre moment" but appeared to laugh at the unusual moment.

Varadkar became the Irish PM when he won a leadership contest earlier in the month following the resignation of Enda Kenny.

During the call, Trump said: "We have so many people from Ireland in this country. I know so many of them, too. I feel I know all of them."

Trump congratulated Varadkar on his "great victory" in a conversation that got off to a slow start after he was put on hold for more than a minute.

The president also invited Varadkar to participate in the traditional White House St. Patrick's Day celebration in March 2018.

A possible visit by Trump to Ireland was not discussed, although Varadkar's predecessor had invited the president to visit the country in March.