Donald Trump has apologized for retweeting an anti-Islamic tweet by a far-right group in Britain late last year. Trump was adamant that he is not a racist and that it was never his intention to endorse Islamophobic acts and racism, in general, with his controversial actions on the social media platform back in November 2017.
In an interview for Good Morning Britain, host Piers Morgan pressed Trump for an apology for his controversial retweets, as ITV reported. Trump told Morgan that he was unaware that the tweets were made by the leader of a far-right group. The president also stressed that he doesn’t know anything about Britain First.
“I know nothing about them and I know nothing about them today other than I read a little bit,” Trump said. “Perhaps it was a big story in Britain, perhaps it was a big story in the UK, but in the United States it wasn’t a big story.”
When Morgan pressed Trump for an apology, the U.S president said that he didn’t “want to cause any difficulty” for the United Kingdom and that he was willing to apologize for the Twitter gaffe if necessary.
“If you are telling me they’re horrible people, racist people, I would certainly apologize if you’d like me to do that.”
Trump also stressed that he retweeted the posts, not because he endorsed anybody but to show his opposition against Islamic terrorism. He said that he was worried of the menace caused by radical Islamic terrorists.
“They had a couple of depictions of radical Islamic terror. It was one because I am a big believer in fighting radical Islamic terror. This was a depiction of radical Islamic terror.”
Looking forward to all my green-eyed media friends whacking me for the worst interview in history, as they simultaneously race to follow up all the news lines... ????#TrumpMorgan pic.twitter.com/dpUP1ri9LT— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) January 25, 2018
Trump received backlash after he retweeted three videos posted by Jayda Fransen on Twitter. Jansen is the leader of Britain First, a far-right political party in the United Kingdom known for its anti-Islamist stand. Its leaders, including Fransen, have been arrested for religious harassment.
The videos Trump retweeted supposedly showed condemnable and violent acts by Muslims. One video was apparently about a Muslim migrant beating up a Dutch Boy who was on crutches. The other one showed a Muslim destroying a statue of the Virgin Mary while the last video showed an Islamist mob pushing a teenage boy off a roof and then beating him to death. The three unverified videos were seen as seditious. The Dutch government has since confirmed that the perpetrator in the first video was not a Muslim and was born and raised in the Netherlands.
Trump also took the opportunity to defend himself against accusations that he is a racist. Trump told Morgan that he is “often the least racist person that anybody is going to meet.”
President Trump told interviewer Piers Morgan: "If you're telling me they're horrible racist people, I would certainly apologize if you would like me to do that," @GMB reports. https://t.co/SwOqqwWyfl— NPR (@NPR) January 26, 2018
Trump was in Davos, a town in Graubünden, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum where he got the opportunity to talk with British Prime Minister Theresa May.
In his interview with Morgan, Trump praised May, who was one of those who called the US president out for the retweets. He said that May was doing a “very good job.” He also said that everything was “very good” between them despite their little feud after the Britain First Twitter controversy.
After Trump retweeted the anti-Islamic posts, May criticized the US President. Trump responded by tweeting the UK leader telling her that she should not focus on him but “on the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism” in the country, as the Guardian reported.