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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

South Africans slate H&M garment:
World denounce Trump comments

JOHANNNESBURG South Africa (Xinhua) -- H&M stores in South Africa were trashed by Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) protesters on Saturday over a allegedly racist sweater ad.

Dozens of EFF protesters wearing same red T-shirt on Saturday morning rushed into an H&M store in Sandton City, one of the most prosperous shopping centers in Johannesburg, vandalizing mannequins and scattering clothes on the floor.

After police arrived, protesters gathered in front of the shop’s door chanting, dancing and whistling, according to Xinhua reporter at the site.

The crowd dismissed at noon.

The H&M store has remained closed since then.

According to local media, similar protests were also seen in other shopping centers nationwide.

EFF Deputy President Floyd Shivambu congratulated members via twitter for physically confronting racism.

The outrage stemmed from a recent ad photo released by H&M showing a black boy wear a green sweater with the slogan "coolest monkey in the jungle" on it.

Shivambu said H&M "nonsense of a clothing store is now facing consequences for its racism.

"All rational people should agree that the store should not be allowed to continue operating in South Africa."

The riot also triggered much criticism. A netizen "TheColouredZimbo" said via Twitter, "What happens if H&M pulls out of South Africa?

"Will the EFF compensate employees for loss of income?"
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EARLIER REPORTS:

South Africa’s ruling ANC official rebukes Trump’s 'shithole' remarks

CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) -- A senior official of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) on Friday rebuked U.S. President Donald Trump’s "shithole" remarks about developing countries.

Trump was "extremely offensive" when he used the term "shithole countries" to describe developing countries, ANC Deputy General Secretary Jessie Duarte told reporters in East London, Eastern Cape Province, where the ANC is to hold its 106th anniversary celebration on Saturday.

The U.S. leader has been under fire at home and abroad after he reportedly referred to Haiti and African nations as "shithole countries" during a meeting on an immigration deal with a group of bipartisan lawmakers at the White House on Thursday.

But Trump later denied calling countries in Africa and elsewhere "shithole countries," saying he used tough language but not the pejorative expression attributed to him.

Trump’s denial, however, failed to alleviate outrage among developing countries.

Developing countries do have difficulties, but they are not "shithole countries," Duarte said, while calling Trump’s remarks as "unfortunate."

"Ours is not a shithole country, neither is Haiti or any other country in distress," said Duarte.

The United States itself has its own problems such as unemployment among millions of people, inequality and non-access to healthcare for many poor people, Duarte said.

The ANC, Duarte said, will not deign to make comments as derogatory as Trump’s to describe the United States.

The ANC is not in a position to stop any president from any country from saying anything they wish, she said.

South Africans went on the social media to vent their outrage over Trump’s remarks.

Opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane tweeted that Trump’s "abhorrent" remarks confirm his patronizing view of Africa and promote a racist agenda.

"Africa/U.S. relations will take strain from this, with a leader who has failed to reconcile humanity," Maimane said.

"The most disturbing thing about Trump’s ‘shithole’ remarks is the way in which his White House encourages assimilation.

"If that’s not a mark of white supremacy, I don’t know what is," reads another tweet.
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Purported Trump comments draw outrage in Africa

ADDIS ABABA Ethiopia (Xinhua) -- Vulgar comments attributed to U.S. President Donald Trump has caused ourage across Africa.

Trump reportedly used the word "shithole" to describe African countries, Haiti and El Salvador while discussing immigration issues with U.S. lawmakers on Thursday.

Speaking to Xinhua, Abebe Ayente, senior researcher at Ethiopian Foreign Relations Strategic Studies (EFRSS), a local think thank, said the comments will further reduce the influence of U.S. at global stage.

Trump issued a statement on Friday denying the vulgar words attributed to him, though he admitted to using strong language in the Thursday discussion.

Trump’s alleged remarks have caused outrage across the world with officials in African, European, Latin American countries and UN expressing condemnation and summoning U.S. diplomats in protest.

Ayene said the undiplomatic word used by the U.S. President that shocked the diplomatic community across the globe will likely have a long-lasting impact.

The African Union (AU) issued a statement on Friday evening calling Trump’s reported remarks outrageous and hurtful.

"While expressing shock, dismay and outrage, the African Union strongly believes there’s a huge misunderstanding of the African continent and its people by the current administration.

"There is a serious need for dialogue between the U.S. Administration and the African countries," said the AU statement.

It further called for the U.S. President to issue an apology for the hurtful remarks not only to Africans but people of African descent across the globe.

"The African Union condemns the comments in the strongest terms and demands a retraction of the comment as well as an apology to not only Africans but to all people of African descent around the globe," further read the AU statement.

Nevertheless, aware the U.S. is still a powerful military and economic power, the AU statement called for continued strategic partnership with the U.S.

But it emphasized that such a partnership should be based on mutual respect and accepted international principles of respect of basic human dignity.

AU spokeswoman Ebba Kalondo pointed out the U.S. role in the Atlantic slave trade, as an example of how African countries Trump described in contemptuous terms were exploited in a shameful manner.

She added the purported statement was particularly unfortunate coming from a leader of country that describes itself as a global example of a successful migrant nation.

Botswana’s government on Friday condemned Trump’s reported disparaging remarks about developing countries, calling on the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the African Union and all other progressive nations across the world to strongly condemn the remarks.

In South Africa, a senior official of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) said Trump was "extremely offensive" when he used the term "shithole countries" to describe developing countries.

Developing countries do have difficulties, but they are not "shithole countries," said ANC Deputy General Secretary Jessie Duarte, calling Trump’s remarks as "unfortunate."

"Ours is not a shithole country, neither is Haiti or any other country in distress," said Duarte.

The United States itself has its own problems such as unemployment among millions of people, inequality and non-access to healthcare for many poor people, Duarte said.
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Botswana condemns disparaging remarks made by U.S. president

GABORONE Botswana (Xinhua) -- Botswana’s government on Friday condemned U.S. President Donald Trump’s reported disparaging remarks about developing countries.

In a statement issued by the Ministry of International Affairs and Cooperation, the Botswana government expressed its displeasure at the alleged utterances made by Trump, when he referred to African countries and others as "shithole countries" during a meeting with a bipartisan group of lawmakers at the White House on Thursday.

Botswana calls on the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the African Union and all other progressive nations across the world to strongly condemn the remarks made by President Trump.

The Botswana government has inquired from the U.S. government through the U.S. Ambassador to Botswana, to clarify if Botswana is regarded as a "shithole" country given that there are Botswana nationals residing in the U.S., and also that some of Batswana may wish to visit the United States.

"The Government of Botswana is wondering why President Trump, must use this descriptor and derogatory word, when talking about countries with whom the U.S. has had cordial and mutually beneficial bilateral relations for so many years," said the statement.
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Cuba condemns Trump’s "racist" statements on Haiti, El Salvador

HAVANA Cuba (Xinhua) -- Cuba’s Foreign Ministry "strongly" condemned Friday night the "racist, denigrating and gross" statements by U.S. President Donald Trump on Haiti, El Salvador and African states.

"These statements, full of hatred and contempt, produce indignation in the Cuban people, proud of the contribution given throughout its history by nationals and their descendants from different latitudes, particularly Africans and Haitians, to the forging of our nationality," said the Ministry in an official statement.

The document stressed that Cuba joins the strong rejection that these statements have arouse around the world, and expresses its most heartfelt solidarity with all the offended countries.

According to The Washington Post, during an Oval Office meeting on Thursday with U.S. senators to discuss the status of some immigrants in the country, President Trump described Haiti, El Salvador and unspecified African countries as "shitholes."

The Post said that Trump rejected a bipartisan bill that would have restored protections for immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador and a handful of African countries.

The president reportedly questioned why the United States would accept more immigrants from Haiti and "shithole countries" in Africa rather than nations like Norway.

His remarks have quickly spread around the world, provoking strong reactions, including those from the United Nations.

UN Spokesman Rupert Colville said Trump’s comments, if confirmed, were "shocking and shameful" and opened the door to "humanity’s worst side and go against universal values."

Trump on Friday denied describing certain nations as "shithole countries" after triggering international outrage.

In a series of tweets on Friday morning, Trump said the language used by him at the meeting was "tough, but this was not the language used," stressing that he "never said anything derogatory about Haitians."

But Democratic Senator Dick Durbin, who was present at the meeting, told MSNBC on Friday that Trump had used the slur to describe those countries.
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Namibia condemns U.S President Trump’s demeaning remarks

WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) -- Namibia has joined other African countries in condemning the U.S. President Donald Trump’s disparaging remarks about developing countries.

Trump caused a global outrage when his demeaning comments about Haiti and immigrants during a meeting at the Oval Office were reported in the American media last week.

Namibia’s international relations permanent secretary Selma Ashipala-Musavyi said in a statement Saturday that Trump’s language "does not contribute to international cooperation."

"The Africa we know and live in is one that is recovering economically and raising," Ashipala-Musavyi, adding that Namibia had learned with disgust and reprehension about the alleged derogatory remarks.

Such language, Ashipala-Musavyi further said, has no place in diplomatic discourse and is contrary to the norms of civility and human progress.

Commending those Americans who have disassociated themselves from Trump’s derogatory remarks, Ashipala-Musavyi reminded Trump that the U.S. was built with blood and sweat of African slaves and immigrants from all over.

"Namibia, while associating itself with the tweeted Africa Union official statement, condemns these utterances and calls on the international community to reject racism in all forms," she said.

African Union (AU) spokesperson Ebba Kalondo has been quoted saying that Trump’s statement "flies in the face of all accepted behaviour and practice."

"Given the historical reality of how many Africans arrived in the United States as slaves, this statement flies in the face of all accepted behaviour and practice," Kalondo said.

Botswana’s Ministry of International Affairs and Cooperation announced Friday that they had summoned the U.S. ambassador to express displeasure with Trump’s remarks.

The statement that was seen by Xinhua also said the U.S. ambassador was asked to clarify if Botswana falls into the category of Trump’s remarks.

"Botswana calls on SADC, the AU and all other progressive nations across the world to strongly condemn the remarks made by President Trump," the statement said.

 

             

 

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