Trump has sparked shock and outrage after sharing anti-Muslim videos posted on Twitter by a British far-right activist.
The three videos were posted by Jayda Fransen, the deputy leader of ‘Britain First’, who claims they show Muslims carrying out violent acts like beatings and vandalism.
In 2016 Jayda Fransen was convicted in court for harassing a hijabi woman. The court also banned her from entering any mosque in the UK because she wa known for taking part in regular mosque ‘invasions’ organized by the far-right group ‘Britain First’. The group is also linked to the 2016 murder of Jo Cox: Thomas Mair, the killer, was shouting the group’s name while stabbing the British MP to death.
One of the tweets shared by Trump shows a video of a teenage boy beating up another teen boy on crutches. The incident happened in May this year in the Dutch town of Monnickendam. But the fact that one of the teens is a Muslim migrant is just a fabrication by right wing islamophobes in the US.
Many groups have slammed Trump’s decision to share the videos.
“By his unconscionable and irresponsible actions this morning, President Trump is clearly telling members of his base that they should hate Islam and Muslims,” said Nihad Awad, from the Council of American-Islamic Relations.
The Muslim Council of Britain called on the UK’s authorities to distance themselves from Trump and his comments.
The Muslim Council of Britain comments on President Trump sharing anti- Muslim videos from the far right pic.twitter.com/rYOlUkLxUj
– MCB (@MuslimCouncil) November 29, 2017
The American Civil Liberties Union also said that “Trump’s prejudice against Muslims reveals itself at every turn”.
Trump’s prejudice against Muslims reveals itself at every turn–with today’s tweets meant to gin up fear and bias, with statements like “Islam hates us,” and with every version of the Muslim ban.
– ACLU (@ACLU) November 29, 2017
In the UK, the official spokesperson for Prime Minister Theresa May, said Trump was “wrong” to share the videos.
“Britain First seeks to divide communities by their use of hateful narratives that peddle lies and stoke tensions. They cause anxiety to law-abiding people,” said a statement reported by UK media.
“British people overwhelmingly reject the prejudiced rhetoric of the far right which is the antithesis of the values this country represents, decency, tolerance and respect. It is wrong for the president to have done this.”
Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour Party, the country’s second-biggest political force, condemned Trump’s retweets as “abhorrent, dangerous and a threat to our society”.
I hope our Government will condemn far-right retweets by Donald Trump. They are abhorrent, dangerous and a threat to our society.
– Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) November 29, 2017
Many others on social media also voiced anger that the holder of such a high office would share material from a far-right activist.
“Trump sharing Britain First. Let that sink in. The President of the United States is promoting a fascist, racist, extremist hate group whose leaders have been arrested and convicted. He is no ally or friend of ours. (Donald Trump) you are not welcome in my country and my city,” British Labour Party MP David Lammy tweeted.
Brian Klass, an academic at the London School of Economics, wrote: “Here in the UK, Britain First is (correctly) seen as a neo-Fascist hate group. They are beyond the fringe extremists. Their leaders have been arrested and convicted for inciting hatred, including the horrible racist woman that Trump re-tweeted multiple times.”
Donald Trump has been retweeting Britain First leader and rampant anti- Muslim activist Jayda Fransen. See how her online following has spiked following recent terror attacks: https://t.co/Zx2aj0KzZk pic.twitter.com/5I8llyLm4M
– HOPE not hate (@hopenothate) November 29, 2017
Wednesday’s retweets are not the first time Trump has shared or made comments that are considered racist or discriminatory.
On Monday, speaking to a group of Native American veterans, Trump referred to Native American Senator Elizabeth Warren as “Pocahontas”.
Trump also campaigned on a platform of banning Muslim entry to the US and the surveillance of mosques in the country.