Donald Trump is ‘NOT a racist’: Black Country Muslim leader calls for US President to be welcomed
A Black Country based Muslim leader has called for Donald Trump to be welcomed to the UK as he insisted the US President was ‘not a racist’.
Wasim Shah, outreach coordinator for the West Birmingham Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, said it was vital that the UK kept open ‘channels for discussion’ with Mr Trump.
The US President provoked worldwide outrage when he enacted an order barring immigrants from seven majority-Muslim countries from visiting the US, and blocking entry for refugees for 120 days.
Mr Shah, who is based in Halesowen, said: “I don’t agree with some of Trump’s views but we have to respect his opinion. For me he is not a racist.
“He is the President of the United States and as such he is entitled to have his say.
“His comments often cause a great deal of controversy, but I see our task as trying to educate him in a positive light.”
Mr Shah added: “He was elected to lead the American people and it is important we keep open the channels for discussion with him here in the UK.
“Personally I am not against him coming here and won’t be protesting if he does.”
However, other Muslim leaders in the region are at odds with Mr Shah’s view.
Mohammed Yaseen Khan, of Wolverhampton’s Ahmadiyya Muslim Association, said Mr Trump’s decision to single out mainly Muslim countries in his immigration crackdown was ‘a racist move’ that could spark World War Three.
“He has picked seven countries, none of which have ever attacked the United States or its citizens,” he said.
“The likes of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain have been left off the list, presumably because he has business interests there.
“The ban is a racist move that could have dreadful consequences.
“Unless his advisors talk some sense into him he might well initiate World War Three.”
Home Secretary Amber Rudd has warned Mr Trump’s travel ban could become a ‘propaganda opportunity’ for ISIS.
She said: “I think the important thing is for this Government to state that we disagree with the ban and we have said that it is divisive, it is wrong. I will continue to say that.”
MPs are set to hold a debate on the Government’s offer of a full UK state visit for Mr Trump on February 20.