Donald Trump has said he is being unfairly blamed for the New Zealand mosque attacks in which 50 people died.
Trump tweeted that the media “is working overtime to blame me for the horrible attack in New Zealand.” He adds: “They will have to work very hard to prove that one.” The gunman in last week’s attacks left a document in which he called himself a white nationalist and referred to Trump as “a symbol of renewed white identity.”
Trump had expressed sympathy for the victims, but played down the threat of white nationalism across the world, saying he didn’t consider it a rising threat despite data suggesting it’s growing.
In the past, Trump has drawn criticism for saying “both sides” were to blame for violence at a deadly white supremacist demonstration.
Meanwhile, New Zealand will tighten gun laws in the wake of its worst modern-day massacre, the government said yesterday, as it emerged that the white supremacist accused of carrying out the killings at two mosques will represent himself in court.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said her coalition was unified on the need to reduce the availability of the kind of weapons used by Brenton Tarrant as he went room to room shooting Muslims gathered for Friday prayers.
“We have made a decision as a cabinet, we are unified,” she said, flanked by her coalition partner and Deputy Prime Minister, Winston Peters.