Conservative MPs are calling for Twitter to suspend Donald Trump’s account after the US president shared inflammatory anti-Muslim videos, originally posted by far-right group Britain First. Even Home Secretary Amber Rudd didn’t reject the idea.
President Trump has been met with ire from both politicians and the public, with UK PM Theresa May condemning the Donald’s actions on Tuesday.
“Britain First seeks to divide communities by their use of hateful narratives that peddle lies and stoke tensions,” a spokesman for Theresa May said on Wednesday. “They cause anxiety to law-abiding people. British people overwhelmingly reject the prejudiced rhetoric of the far right which is the antithesis of the values this country represents, decency, tolerance and respect.”
BREAKING PM Theresa May goes on the record in her own words: "Retweeting from Britain First was the wrong thing to do." @realDonaldTrump
— Christopher Hope (@christopherhope) November 30, 2017
Trump was quick to hit back, though, telling May to keep an eye on her own backyard in a tweet sent out to his 46.3 million followers.
.@Theresa_May, don’t focus on me, focus on the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism that is taking place within the United Kingdom. We are doing just fine!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 30, 2017
It is understood the British ambassador to Washington, Sir Kim Darroch, has now formally raised the issue with the White House. UK politicians are now calling on Theresa May to rescind Trump’s state visit invitation.
In response to Trump’s very public dressing down of the British leader, Conservative MPs came up with a solution to his beef with everybody: just delete his account.
Put to Home Secretary Amber Rudd as an urgent question in the House of Commons on Wednesday, Tory MP Peter Bone suggested the UK should rely on its ‘special relationship’ with the US to convince the president to shut down his personal account.
“One of the advantages of having such a special relationship with the United States is when a friend tells you you’ve done something dreadfully wrong, you tend to listen,” Bone said. “Wouldn’t the world be a better place if the Prime Minister could persuade the President of the United States to delete his Twitter account?”
Rudd seemed to agree with Bone’s suggestion, commenting that “we all listen more carefully, perhaps, to criticism from our friends than from people who we don’t have a relationship with.”
THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, DONALD TRUMP, HAS RETWEETED THREE OF DEPUTY LEADER JAYDA FRANSEN'S TWITTER VIDEOS! DONALD TRUMP HIMSELF HAS RETWEETED THESE VIDEOS AND HAS AROUND 44 MILLION FOLLOWERS! GOD BLESS YOU TRUMP! GOD BLESS AMERICA! OCS @JaydaBF@realDonaldTrumppic.twitter.com/BiQfQkTra9
— Jayda Fransen (@JaydaBF) November 29, 2017
Twitter’s ‘hateful conduct policy’ dictates that accounts may be suspended if violent threats are made, if the account user makes references to violent events, violence which specifically targets groups or victims, or behavior that incites fear about races, ethnicities, or other groups of people.
Tory MP Tim Loughton also weighed in, joking that a former Twitter employee was “the most popular man in the world” after he unplugged the controversial president’s account last month.
Loughton accused Trump of committing a “hate crime” by sharing the videos.
"If Twitter is genuine in its commitment to fight hate crime online it should have no hesitance in taking down the Twitter account of the first citizen of the United States as it would any citizen in the world who peddled such hate crime.”
Amber Rudd replied: “I am sure the Chief Executive of Twitter will have heard the interesting suggestion from my honorable friend and we will leave it to them to decide what action to take.”
During the debate, Rudd reiterated the British government’s equal stance against all types of extremism. She noted that a significant chunk of its counter-radicalization program ‘Channel’ is made up of far-right extremists who spout racial or anti-Muslim hate.
“It is essential that we have a fair approach to all types of extremism,” Rudd said. “With a view to that, we always make sure that the right extremism is treated just as harshly, as it should be, as any sort of radical Islamic terrorism. It is interesting to observe that 25 percent of referrals to the Channel Program… are in fact on the far-right side.”
RT has reached out to Twitter for comment.