President Trump was 'wrong' to retweet anti-Muslim videos from a British far-right group, a spokesman for the British Prime Minister said on Wednesday.
The videos were from the twitter feed of Jayda Fransen, the Deputy Leader of the Britain First party, a small right-wing extremist group. Prime Minister May's spokesman was keen to distance the British government from Britain First's reputation and activities. "Britain First seeks to divide communities through their use of hateful narratives which peddle lies and stoke tensions. They cause anxiety to law abiding people," the spokesman said.
Britain First has a limited support base in Britain (it has never managed to win any electoral office), but does have a reputation for staging Islamophobic and racist stunts on social media.
Fransen is currently due to stand trial on four counts of religiously aggravated harassment related to her actions at a recent Britain First protest. Last year, she was convicted under the same law for verbally abusing a Muslim woman for wearing the hijab.
Until now, Britain First have attracted most attention for publicity stunts such as 'occupations' of British mosques- in which their supporters enter mosques uninvited and begin distributing bibles. They have also held 'Christian patrols' in an area of London with a large Muslim population.
In 2015, Fransen organised a protest against the use of halal (Islamically sanctioned) meat in British restaurants. During the event she told a BBC documentary crew that 'I don't acknowledge Allah. Allah is not the same God as the Christian God. Allah in my opinion is Satan. And I am not prepared to eat meat that's been offered to Satan, and neither should anyone else in Britain'.
Since Trump's decision to retweet videos from her twitter feed, Fransen has released a new video publicly thanking the US President, and asking him 'on behalf of the British people' to intervene in her upcoming court case.
Below is the tweet president Trump retweeted.
But according to Dutch media, culprit wasn't a Muslim. Also not a migrant. But a 16-year old Dutch boy from town of Edam-Volendam.
— Harald Doornbos (@HaraldDoornbos) November 29, 2017
"British people overwhelmingly reject the prejudiced rhetoric of the far right, which is the antithesis of the values that this country represents — decency, tolerance and respect. It is wrong for the president to have done this."
Trump sharing Britain First. Let that sink in. The President of the United States is promoting a fascist, racist, extremist hate group whose leaders have been arrested and convicted. He is no ally or friend of ours. @realDonaldTrump you are not welcome in my country and my city.
— David Lammy (@DavidLammy) November 29, 2017
Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the main opposition Labour party, had tweeted earlier: "I hope our government will condemn far-right retweets by Donald Trump. They are abhorrent, dangerous and a threat to our society."