Donald Trump challenged to visit Edinburgh mosque
DONALD Trump has been challenged to visit an Edinburgh mosque when he comes to Scotland to open his new golf course later this month.
The Republican presidential candidate, who last year called for a ban on Muslims entering the United States, has been sent an invitation to visit from two prominent mosque leaders in Edinburgh.
And the pair have told Trump that dropping in to see them might teach him “more about the Muslims that he offends almost every time he opens his mouth”.
Scottish politicians have called for the Republican candidate to be banned from Britain in response to his “hate-preaching” about Muslims, who Trump has claimed nurse a “hatred” of Americans.
The billionaire tycoon will visit Scotland at the end of this month to re-launch his Turnberry golf course and hotel in South Ayrshire after a £200 million revamp.
Hafiz Ghafoor, of Edinburgh’s Annandale Mosque, and Munawar Hussain, secretary of Roxburgh Street Mosque and Islamic Centre in the city, have released a statement accusing Mr Trump of “ignorance”.
They said he should educate himself “before he makes another inflammatory speech”.
The statement added: “Donald Trump aspires to lead the free world but his run for the White House has been rooted in ignorance and intolerance.
“Muslims in Scotland and elsewhere are working together with people of all faiths to build understanding and peace across the world and tackle extremism.
“Before he makes another inflammatory speech, Mr Trump should learn more about the Muslims that he offends almost every time he opens his mouth.
“We would welcome the opportunity to show him the work that we are doing in the community in Edinburgh when he comes to Scotland later this month.”
Both mosques have worked with the homeless while also working to improve relations between faiths.
Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie has echoed their call, after getting in touch with the mosques.
He said: “Donald Trump has spent much of the last year spouting disgusting nonsense about women, Mexicans and others, but some of his most ludicrous statements have been about Muslims.
“Muslims are our friends, colleagues, family and neighbours. When he insults them in such a grotesque manner he insults us all.
“I have been in touch with Muslim community leaders in Edinburgh. He should come and meet some of those he wants to ban from America when he visits Scotland later this month.”
On December 2 last year, 14 people were killed at a health centre in San Bernardino, California, by a Muslim couple who were believed to have been radicalised.
The attack prompted Mr Trump’s comments demanding a temporary ban on Muslims entering America.
It also led to a petition being launched calling for the UK government to ban Mr Trump from coming to Britain, which amassed hundreds of thousands of signatures, becoming one of the biggest ever petitions on the government’s website.
He is already set to face protests against his visit while he is in the country, under the banner “Scotland against Trump”.
He was due to arrive on the day after the EU referendum, but last week he announced he had changed his plans and will land the day before voters go to the polls on June 23.
This has prompted speculation he plans to make an intervention, after previously disagreeing with David Cameron on the topic saying the UK should leave the EU.
The Prime Minister has condemned Mr Trump’s views about Muslims as “stupid, divisive and wrong”.
But Mr Cameron has also said that he would be “very happy” to meet Mr Trump in the UK before the presidential vote.
In a recent poll, 42 per cent of the UK public think the Prime Minister should not meet Mr Trump, and another 31 per cent said he should, but only to criticise him face to face.