Trump Under Fire for 'Using' London Attacks to Promote Muslim Travel Ban
President Donald Trump offered US help Saturday to Britain in response to reports of three violent incidents, including a vehicle mowing down pedestrians on London Bridge.
US President Donald Trump first retweeted a Drudge Report item about the attacks, then provided his own message about the travel ban.
Washington: President Donald Trump faced strong criticism on Sunday for arguing in favour of his controversial travel ban hours after twin terror attacks in London.
One tweet read: "We need to be smart, vigilant and tough. We need the courts to give us back our rights. We need the Travel Ban as an extra level of safety!"
We need to be smart, vigilant and tough. We need the courts to give us back our rights. We need the Travel Ban as an extra level of safety!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 3, 2017
At least six people were killed when a truck ploughed into pedestrians on London Bridge and weekend revellers stabbed at nearby Borough Market. Police said three suspects had been shot dead within eight minutes of the first call and that they wore fake suicide vests.
Trump began tweeting about the incidents an hour or so after initial news reports. First, he retweeted a Drudge Report item about the attacks, then provided his own message about the travel ban.
A few minutes later Trump tweeted a message of support for Londoners: "Whatever the United States can do to help out in London and the U. K., we will be there - WE ARE WITH YOU. GOD BLESS!"
Whatever the United States can do to help out in London and the U. K., we will be there - WE ARE WITH YOU. GOD BLESS!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 3, 2017
The tweet prompted criticism from commentators and political observers who accused Trump of “opportunism at London’s expense”.
According to a report in The Guardian, Daniel Drezner, a politics professor at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, denounced the president as “a cheap hustler occupying an office that you don’t understand”.
John Horgan, a psychologist and terrorist expert at Georgia State University, called Trump the “Opportunist-in-Chief”.
Twitterati, too, were unforgiving in their criticism with many raking up his 'covfefe' tweet and the recent visit to Saudi Arabia.
You retweeted Drudge Report? Guess it's time for this pic.twitter.com/5YVLqzC5v4— Maury Brown (@BizballMaury) June 4, 2017
I you want to make America safe from terror, why did you go & dance with the funders of terrorism in Saudi???You're putting Saudi first.— Trita Parsi (@tparsi) June 3, 2017
Nice to see your selfish narcissistic power mad lunacy once again outstrip even a quantum of actual humanity. You'll be a pleasure to jail.— John McNamara (@johnthemcnamara) June 4, 2017
You mean the ban that excludes Saudi Arabia where most of the 9/11 attackers were from & whom we just made a $110 billion weapons deal with?— Jeremy M (@thismyshow) June 4, 2017
You are a horrible man to use the London tragedy in this way. Just stop.— Nancy Hightower (@NancyHightower) June 4, 2017
Fearmongering covfefe— John Moravec (@moravec) June 4, 2017
Another 8 minutes before someone convinced you to express a sentiment abt the ACTUAL victims here. That's malignant narcissism. Shame on you— Amanda Guinzburg (@Guinz) June 3, 2017
Earlier this week, the Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to immediately reinstate its ban on travelers from six mostly Muslim countries and refugees from anywhere in the world. The administration argues that the U.S. will be safer if the policy is put in place.
Lower courts have blocked the Trump policy, citing various reasons including statements Trump made during the 2016 campaign. The legal fight pits the president's authority over immigration against what lower courts have said is a policy that purported to be about national security but was intended to target Muslims.
ALSO READ | London Terror Attacks: 10 Things We Know So Far
In response to the London attacks, the State Department issued a statement condemning them as "cowardly."
"The United States stands ready to provide any assistance authorities in the United Kingdom may request," State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said.
"Our hearts are with the families and loved ones of the victims. We wish a full and quick recovery to those injured in the attacks. All Americans stand in solidarity with the people of the United Kingdom," she said.
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