Sunday 26 January 2020

Trump lashes out again at response from London mayor to terror attack

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan arrives in Potters Field Park for an event for the victims of Saturday nights attacks. Photo: Reuters
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan arrives in Potters Field Park for an event for the victims of Saturday nights attacks. Photo: Reuters

Julie Pace and Catherine Lucey

US President Donald Trump for a second day lashed out at London's mayor on Twitter in the wake of a deadly terror attack in the city.

Mr Trump stated on Twitter yesterday that London Mayor Sadiq Khan had offered a "pathetic excuse" and "had to think fast on his 'no reason to be alarmed' statement".

Mr Trump's tweet renews his mischaracterisation of Mr Khan's statement to London residents following a vehicle and knife attack that left seven people dead and dozens injured. The mayor had told London residents not to be concerned by a stepped-up police presence in the city after the incident.

In a Sunday tweet, Mr Trump mischaracterised Mr Khan's remarks by suggesting the mayor had said there was "no reason to be alarmed" about the attack itself. Mr Khan's spokesman said he was too busy to respond to Mr Trump's "ill-informed" tweet. Yesterday, a spokesman for Mr Khan responded to the latest statement from Mr Trump, saying: "Nothing has changed since yesterday." He said: "The mayor is focused on dealing with Saturday's horrific and cowardly attack and working with the police, the emergency services and the government to keep London safe."

Earlier yesterday, before the president's latest outburst, British Prime Minister Theresa May was pushed hard before saying Mr Trump was "wrong" to attack Mr Khan. After avoiding several attempts by reporters to get her to condemn the US president, Mrs May was asked what it would take for her to criticise Mr Trump.

Instead, she reiterated her disappointment over his decision to pull out of the Paris agreement on climate change. After some further heckling, she went further. "Sadiq Khan is doing a good job," she told a news conference in central London. "It's wrong to say anything else."

Yesterday’s tweet from Donald Trump
Yesterday’s tweet from Donald Trump

The war of words was the latest episode in a long simmering feud between Mr Trump and Mr Khan, a Muslim who was elected as London's mayor in May 2016. After his election last year, Mr Khan tweeted criticism of then-candidate Mr Trump's rhetoric, saying that his "ignorant view of Islam could make both our countries less safe. It risks alienating mainstream Muslims." Mr Trump later challenged Mr Khan to an IQ test during an interview on ITV.

Irish Independent

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