Trump threatened to send 25 million Mexicans to Japan: report

President Donald Trump pauses while speaking at a rally at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium, in Nashville, Tennessee (File Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP)
Updated 16 June 2018
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Trump threatened to send 25 million Mexicans to Japan: report

WASHINGTON: Donald Trump threatened Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe he would ship 25 million Mexicans to his country, one of a series of bizarre missives that jarred fellow leaders at last week’s acrimonious G7 meet, according to a report on Friday.
The Group of Seven summit gathering of top industrialized democracies finished in disarray after the US president abruptly rejected its consensus statement and bitterly attacked Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Behind the scenes, Trump’s counterparts were dismayed by verbal jabs on topics ranging from trade to terrorism and migration, The Wall Street Journal said, quoting European officials who were present.
At one point he described migration as a big problem for Europe then said to Abe: “Shinzo, you don’t have this problem, but I can send you 25 million Mexicans and you’ll be out of office very soon,” creating a sense of irritation in the room, according to an EU official.
The source added that when the topic turned to Iran and terrorism, Trump took aim at French President Emmanuel Macron, saying: “You must know about this, Emmanuel, because all the terrorists are in Paris.”
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker also came under fire and was repeatedly described by Trump as a “brutal killer” in reference to the bloc’s antitrust and tax fines against US tech companies that have run into billions of dollars.
Bitter differences over trade dominated the summit hosted by Canada, with leaders of the world’s largest economies lining up against Trump’s threats to impose stiff tariffs on imported steel and aluminum.
After rejecting the joint statement, Trump and his top aides assailed Trudeau, accusing him of dishonesty and betrayal.
Trump on Friday rejected reports of discord, blaming the “Fake News Media” on Twitter for portraying a false picture while posting several photos of himself appearing to get along well with fellow G7 leaders.


Thai police order for intel on Muslim students sparks outrage

Updated 34 min 55 sec ago

Thai police order for intel on Muslim students sparks outrage

  • Rights groups have long accused the state of heavy-handed sweeps of the Malay-Muslim population
  • Muslims make up Thailand’s second largest religious group, with the majority residing in its three southernmost states

BANGKOK: A Thai Muslim student group Wednesday called for police to drop an order requesting universities to provide “intelligence” on Muslim students and their activities in the Buddhist-majority state.
Muslims make up Thailand’s second largest religious group, with the majority residing in its three southernmost states, which since 2004 have been in the grip of a conflict between Malay-Muslim separatist rebels and Thai authorities.
Rights groups have long accused the state of heavy-handed sweeps of the majority Malay-Muslim population in that region — which is under martial law.
Last week the Special Branch Bureau issued a nationwide order to universities to provide “intelligence” on Muslim students and their activities in school, police spokesman Krissana Pattanacharoen told AFP Tuesday, citing “security” concerns.
The news sparked immediate outrage from the community, and the Muslim Students Federation of Thailand on Wednesday called for parliament to “cancel” the request.
The Special Branch’s order “is also a form of discrimination that breaches the constitution,” president Ashraf Awae said, speaking outside parliament.
Such “groundless accusations... could create divisions among the Muslim students and others in the university and society,” he said.
He added the federation had already heard of police requesting information on Muslim student groups from at least three major universities.
Junta chief-turned-prime minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha on Tuesday defended the Special Branch, and denied creating a “database” would be a violation of people’s rights.
“We can’t arrest anyone if they don’t do anything wrong,” he told reporters.
Prayut’s backing shows an “alarming trend of growing Islamophobia in Thailand,” said Human Rights Watch’s Sunai Phasuk.
“This is state-sanctioned discrimination,” he told AFP, adding that the Thai constitution explicitly prohibits discrimination toward different religions and ethnic groups.
“It could feed into radicalization of Muslims in the deep south and worsen the conflict,” Sunai said.
The ex-general had masterminded a coup in 2014, leading a five-year junta regime before elections in March formally installed him as a civilian premier thanks to a new constitution tilted to the military.
Under Prayut’s tenure as junta head, police had rounded up at least 50 Thai Muslims, mostly university students, in a dragnet operation in October 2016 that authorities justified was necessary to stop a suspected car bomb plot.