Angelina Jolie Pitt spoke out against Donald Trump and his anti-Muslim sentiments in London on Monday in her role as the special envoy of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, while calling for a coordinated effort to help displaced people.
Jolie Pitt is currently staying in the U.K. with her husband, Brad and their six children and while Brad Pitt is filming his latest movie, Allied, Angelina is continuing with her humanitarian work.
Making an impassioned plea for the world to unite in a coordinated response to the refugee crisis, Jolie Pitt spoke out against the U.S. presidential candidate. In his campaigning, Trump has called for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States as thousands of Syrians flee their war-torn country, while President Barack Obama has pledged to take in 10,000 refugees.
As reported by the Guardian, Donald Trump‘s comments have caused waves of anger among Islamic communities, and when Jolie Pitt was asked for her thoughts, she said, “To me, America is built on people from around the world coming together for freedoms, especially freedom of religion. So it’s hard to hear this is coming from someone who is pressing to be an American president.”
— E! News (@enews) May 17, 2016
Angelina Jolie Pitt is not alone in her feelings about Trump’s comments, as the newly-elected mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has also described The Donald’s words as “ignorant.” Trump recently said he would make an exception for Khan and would allow him to enter the U.S., a remark Khan brushed off.
According to the International Business Times, while comparing the current situation to World War II, Jolie Pitt made an impassioned plea for the world to unite in a coordinated effort to help refugees. She dubbed it a “once-in-a-generation moment when nations have to pull together” and warned against “fear of migration.”
The Hollywood actress said that aid efforts are “drastically underfunded” and that the system to deal with the influx of refugees is beginning to “break down.” According to Jolie Pitt, this isn’t because the model is flawed or because refugees are behaving differently. It’s due to the fact that the number of conflicts and the scale of displacements have grown so large.
Angelina Jolie Pitt slams Donald Trump’s anti-Muslim comments https://t.co/rqwtXFptIA
— TIME.com (@TIME) May 17, 2016
Angelina went on to say she recognized that some people felt angry about the number of people on the move and that they had no faith that institutions could deal with the problem.
“It has given space to a false air of legitimacy to those who promote the politics of fear and separation,” she said. “It has created the risk of a race to the bottom, with countries competing to be the toughest in the hope of protecting themselves whatever the cost or challenge to their neighbors, and despite their international responsibilities.”
“If your neighbor’s house is on fire you are not safe if you lock your doors. Strength lies in being unafraid.”
According to UN figures, there are currently 60 million displaced people in the world, and of the 20 million refugees that made it out of their countries last year, only one percent were resettled.
The UN set out a plan last week, aiming to resettle at least 10 percent each year in an attempt to tackle the crisis. UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon says he hopes the new “global compact on responsibility-sharing” will lift some of the burden on developing countries.
Jolie Pitt asked the international community to be more generous towards the refugees, saying each is “a person with an equal right to stand in dignity on this planet”.
“This is a duty that falls on all of us, to the next UN secretary-general, to all governments, to civil society, to every one of us. Whether we succeed will help define this century. The alternative is chaos.”
In the video below, Angelina talks about her experiences with refugees, how she admires them for their generosity and strength, and how they help each other, saying, “There is a generosity, there is a kindness, there is a strength, that could be represented more.”
[Photo by Milos Bicanski/Getty Images]