Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau rebuked US President Donald Trump’s racist remarks to freshmen members of Congress, saying it’s “not how we do things in Canada.”
“I think Canadians and indeed people around the world know exactly what I think about those particular comments,” Trudeau said at a joint press conference alongside NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Monday.
“That is not how we do things in Canada. A Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian.”
On Sunday, Trump let loose on freshmen members of Congress in a series of tweets.
“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” he wrote, alluding to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Ayanna Pressley, who had all criticized the administration during the past week.
Ocasio-Cortez immediately hit back on Twitter, saying the “corrupt” and “crime infested” country he seemed to tell her to “go back” to was in fact the US.
Ocasio-Cortez, Pressley, and Tlaib were all born in the US, while Omar came to the country as a refugee from Somalia and is now an American citizen.
Trump defended his tweets on Monday, saying he wasn’t concerned with backlash calling his comments racist.
“It doesn’t concern me, because many people agree with me,” Trump told reporters at the White House.
“And all I’m saying: They want to leave, they can leave. Now, it doesn’t say leave forever — it says leave if you want,” he added.
The four Congresswomen also held a press conference on Monday, where they said Trump’s comments were a “distraction” from what they wanted to work towards in office, and that Trump’s comments challenged American ideals.
Trump has been criticized by leading Democrat figures including Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton, though members of the GOP have largely stayed silent.
Trudeau is also not the only international leader to condemn Trump’s comments: UK Prime Minister Theresa May said his comments were “completely unacceptable” and the who candidates to take over her role also criticised Trump