May's Refusal To Condemn Trump Refugee Ban Spark Criticisms
Jan 30, 2017 03:56 PM EST
British Prime Minister Theresa May's repeated refusal to condemn U.S. President Donald Trump's refugee ban and immigration restrictions aroused frustration and disappointment throughout the United Kingdom. May paid a visit to the United States last week to strengthen the countries' relations citing their "special relationship." Following her meeting with Trump, she held a joint press conference with Prime Minister Binali Yildirim.
However, the focus shifted as reporters were keen on asking the two about Trump's recent actions, which sparked global debate. The issues raised were about the ban on refugees, halting asylum admissions for 120 days and the suspension on travel visas for citizens of Muslim-majority countries. Faisal Islam, the political editor of Sky News, asked whether she viewed it as "an action of the leader of the free world."
May gave a vague answer but went on praising Turkey's efforts in supporting the refugees. Yildirim, on the other hand, criticized the visa restrictions stating that the refugee issue is a global issue and it cannot be resolved by constructing walls. When pressed for the second time, May said "The United States is responsible for the United States policy on refugees. The United Kingdom is responsible for the United Kingdom's policy on refugees."
Ed Miliband who is a former Labour leader, posted a tweet on his account saying that "PM's refusal to condemn Trump Muslim ban is shocking, wrong and cannot stand. It flies in the face of the values of the people across Britain." In addition, current Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called out May's refusal to condemn Trump's hideous actions as a "weak failure" and that it's important for the refugees to feel that they are always welcome in Britain.
Yildirim added "They came here to save their lives. Our doors were open and if the same thing were to happen again we would do the same. If there is someone in need you give them a helping hand." Notably, Turkey has added three million refugees as a result of the Syrian conflict. Thus, the Turkish prime minister promised on continuing to accommodate those people until there is peace in Syria.
Following May's refusal to condemn the ban on refugees, Brits have expressed their disappointment over their prime minister by using the hashtag Theresa the Appeaser on twitter. May has been firm on her stance regarding immigration and has remarked that Britain should move on and stop meddling with foreign affairs.