Donald Trump retweets anti-Muslim videos from far-right British party
The unverified videos were posted by Jayda Fransen, the deputy leader of the far-right group Britain First.Updated: Nov 29, 2017 19:45 IST
US President Donald Trump on Wednesday retweeted three anti-Muslim videos posted by Jayda Fransen, the deputy leader of the far-right group Britain First who has been convicted of religiously aggravated harassment.
Jayda Fransen, a leader of the anti-immigrant Britain First group, posted the videos by saying that they showed a group of people who are Muslim beating a teenage boy to death, battering a boy on crutches and destroying a Christian statue.
Reuters was unable to immediately verify the videos.
Trump retweeted the videos without comment. He then turned to the more familiar territory and suggested a boycott of “Fake News CNN”, before celebrating the level of the stock market and commenting on the firing of NBC anchor Matt Lauer.
Britain First, which has about 24,000 followers, tweeted excitedly: “Donald Trump himself has retweeted these videos and has around 44 million followers! God bless you Trump!”
Trump has often used his Twitter account to promote dubious figures. Earlier this week, Trump highlighted a website called MagaPill which promotes a variety of conspiracies. He has also used his account to retweet a Mussolini quote , to share a post from the account @whitegenocidetm and to circulate false and racially inflammatory crime statistics.
When asked in 2015, he said that he considered retweets endorsements. “You know, I retweet, I retweet for a reason,” he said.
Trump has long been criticised for anti-Muslim rhetoric. In December 2015, he called for a ban on Muslims entering the US. He previously suggested the creation of a government database to track Muslim Americans and made false claims that Muslims in New Jersey celebrated the terrorist attacks on 9/11.
He also tweeted in 2015 about what he called the UK’s “massive Muslim problem”.
Since taking office, Trump has shown more restraint in his rhetoric and boasted about his reception at a summit in Saudi Arabia. However, he has been under heavy criticism for his travel ban, which was originally directed at seven predominantly Muslim countries. Many critics viewed the policy as a backdoor attempt to implement his campaign promise of a Muslim ban.
Fransen, along with the fringe group’s head, was arrested in September and charged with causing religiously aggravated harassment over the distribution of leaflets and posting online videos during the court trial involving the case of a number of Muslim men accused and later convicted of rape. Earlier this month, she was found guilty of religiously aggravated harassment after she verbally abused a Muslim woman wearing a hijab.
First Published: Nov 29, 2017 19:23 IST