Far-right leader says Trump ’railroaded’ into apology offer over video retweets

Far-right leader says Trump ’railroaded’ into apology offer over video retweets
Britain First Deputy Leader Jayda Fransen leaves Belfast Laganside Courts, where she faced charges related to comments made about Islam.

The deputy leader of far-right group Britain First has said Donald Trump was "railroaded" into offering to apologise for retweeting her videos.

Jayda Fransen accused Piers Morgan of misrepresenting her views to Donald Trump and said the broadcaster owed her an apology.

In an interview with ITV’s Morgan, Mr Trump said he knew "nothing" about Britain First before sharing three of its videos in November.

She said: "In this instance he (Morgan) has completely misled the president of the United States by claiming that I am something I am not.

"I have challenged Piers Morgan to sit down with me and to discuss these absolutely horrific accusations that I am a horrible nasty racist - something I wholeheartedly refute.

"Let’s have a civilised discussion, let’s not mislead people and let’s not proclaim to represent the entire UK by saying that I am a horrible racist, I should be condemned."

But Mr Morgan, who told his Good Morning Britain colleagues that he had told the president that Britain First "are racist, fascist people", hit back on Twitter, saying: "Here’s my apology to her: ’Sorry I wasn’t more offensive about you.’"

On Friday Fransen appeared in court in Belfast on a hate speech charge.

"The fact is that Donald Trump retweeted those because they are a matter of national and worldwide security.

"Islamic terrorism is affecting us and he has been railroaded into saying that he would offer an apology, if, and those were President Trump’s words, if Piers Morgan says I am a horrible nasty racist then of course he would condemn me.

"Well that goes without saying, I would do the same if somebody told me and could evidence that someone was a horrible nasty racist then I would have the same feelings about them.

"But quite frankly, it is not true."

Fransen said she would like to meet the president when he visits the United Kingdom later this year and insisted he was supported by "millions of people" in the UK.

Britain First uses social media to gain attention for its anti-Islam message.

Fransen said the retweet by the president caused a frenzy and prompted the British establishment to claim he was not welcome in the UK.

"He is very welcome and that is evidenced by the millions of people that have shown support for him right here in the UK," she said.

"The fact is this is about censorship, it is about the British establishment trying to censor the president of the United States and his social media presence and frankly accusing someone of being a horrible nasty racist with absolutely no evidence to back that up is irresponsible, immoral and I am the one that is owed an apology by Piers Morgan.

"I sincerely hope I receive it."

- PA

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