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President Donald Trump on Wednesday shared anti-Muslim videos posted on Twitter by a far-right British party leader, drawing condemnation from Britain, U.S. Muslim groups and some members of Congress.
Axar.az reports citing Reuters that, the White House defended the retweets by the Republican president, who during the 2016 U.S. election campaign called for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States,” saying that he was raising security issues.
As president, Trump has issued executive orders banning entry to some citizens of several Muslim-majority countries, although courts have partially blocked the measures from taking effect.
“Look, I‘m not talking about the nature of the video,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters. “The threat is real and that’s what the president is talking about is the need for national security, the need for military spending, and those are very real things. There’s nothing fake about that.”
Jayda Fransen, deputy leader of anti-immigration Britain First, posted the videos which she said showed a group of people who were Muslims beating a teenage boy to death, battering a boy on crutches and destroying a Christian statue. Fransen was convicted earlier this month of abusing a Muslim woman and was ordered to pay a fine and legal costs.
Some British lawmakers demanded an apology from Trump for sharing the videos with his nearly 44 million Twitter followers and U.S. Muslim groups said he had been incendiary and reckless.
“It is wrong for the president to have done this,” the spokesman for British Prime Minister Theresa May said.
“Britain First seeks to divide communities through their use of hateful narratives which peddle lies and stoke tensions. They cause anxiety to law-abiding people,” the spokesman said.
Trump fired back at May over her criticism.
“Theresa @theresamay, don’t focus on me, focus on the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism that is taking place within the United Kingdom. We are doing just fine,” Trump tweeted, using an incorrect Twitter handle for May. He later issued a tweet with her correct handle, “@Theresa_May”.
The White House repeatedly refused to be drawn into the content of the videos or whether Trump was aware of the source of the tweets.
“It’s about ensuring that individuals who come into the United States don’t pose a public safety or terrorism threat,” White House spokesman Raj Shah told reporters aboard Air Force One.
Fransen thanked Trump and said, “The important message here is Donald Trump has been made aware of the persecution and prosecution of a political leader in Britain for giving what has been said by police to be an anti-Islamic speech.”
2017.11.30 / 17:24