Theresa May has called comments by Donald Trump “completely unacceptable”. Series of tweets were directed to oppositon congresswomen from minority ethnic backgrounds in the US. Trump’s tweets provoked waves of reactions including other politicians and woman-rights supporters.
The US president was criticised over a series of tweets in which he said female politicians in the Democratic Party should “go back and help fix” their “broken and crime infested countries”.
In a follow-up post he called on them to apologise for the “foul language they have used” and “terrible things they have said”.
Mr Trump did not name the congresswomen but appeared to refer to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.
All of them are US citizens and only Ms Omar, originally from Somalia, is foreign-born.
The US president said it was “so sad” Democrats had come out in support of the women.
He had written on Sunday: “So interesting to see ‘Progessive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world… now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government should be run.
“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”
He then posted in a new tweet on Monday: “When will the Radical Left Congresswomen apologise to our country, the people of Israel and even to the office of the president, for the foul language they have used, and the terrible things they have said. So many people are angry at them & their horrible & disgusting actions!”
Ms Ocasio-Cortez, who is of Puerto Rican descent, wrote in response: “You are angry because you can’t conceive of an America that includes us.
“You rely on a frightened America for your plunder.”
Ms Omar tweeted the president: “You are stoking white nationalism (because) you are angry that people like us are serving in Congress and fighting against your hate-filled agenda.”
Ms Tlaib wrote on Twitter in the hours after the tweet was posted: “Want a response to a lawless and complete failure of a president?
“He is the crisis. His dangerous ideology is the crisis. He needs to be impeached.”
Congressman Hakeem Jeffries of New York, the chairman of the US house Democratic Caucus, tweeted in response: “Racial arsonist strikes again. Shut. Your. Reckless. Mouth.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren, a Democratic presidential candidate, tweeted: “Let’s be clear about what this vile comment is: A racist and xenophobic attack on Democratic congresswomen.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Mr Trump’s tweet had shown his plan had always been about “making America white again”.
Asked about the post by journalists on Monday morning, Mrs May’s spokesperson said: “The prime minister’s view is that [the] language used to refer to the women was completely unacceptable.”
The US president shrugged off the criticism in a series of tweets on Sunday.
He wrote: “So sad to see the Democrats sticking up for people who speak so badly of our Country and who, in addition, hate Israel with a true and unbridled passion.
“Whenever confronted, they call their adversaries, including Nancy Pelosi, “RACIST”.
“Their disgusting language and the terrible thing they say about the United States must not be allowed to go unchallenged.”
Few Republicans weighed in on the president’s remarks.
Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell did not respond to requests for comment.
Neither did Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, the only Republican black senator.
But Republican representative Justin Amash of Michigan, a critic of Mr Trump who recently took steps to leave his party, called Mr Trump’s remarks about the congresswomen “racist and disgusting”.
Mr Trump appears to have been seeking to insert himself further into a rift between Ms Pelosi and Ms Ocasio-Cortez, just two days after he came to the house speaker’s defence in a row between the pair.
Ms Pelosi has been seeking to minimise Ms Ocasio-Cortez’s influence in recent days, prompting the New York congresswoman to accuse the speaker of trying to marginalise women of colour.
The president said of Ms Pelosi on Friday: “She is not racist.”
Ms Ocasio-Cortez, who is of Puerto Rican descent, was born in the Bronx, New York, and raised in suburban Westchester County.
Ms Pressley, the first black woman elected to the US house from Massachusetts, was born in Cincinnati.
Ms Omar, the first Somali native elected to congress and one of its first Muslim women, was born in Somalia but spent much of her childhood in a Kenyan refugee camp as civil war tore apart her home country.
She immigrated to the United States at the age of 12, teaching herself English by watching American TV and eventually settling with her family in Minneapolis.
Ms Tlaib, the daughter of Palestinian immigrants, was born in Detroit.
Source : SKY News