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Donald Trump in new 'racist attack' against Ilhan Omar's Somali background: 'How's your country doing?' Open in fullscreen

The New Arab Staff

Donald Trump in new 'racist attack' against Ilhan Omar's Somali background: 'How's your country doing?'

Donald Trump has made racially insensitive comments about Omar in the past [Getty]

Date of publication: 23 September, 2020

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The US president addressed a crowd of supporters during a campaign rally, where he accused Ilham Omar of trying to run the country.
US President Donald Trump launched a "racist attack" against Muslim Minnesota congresswoman Ilhan Omar over her Somali background, in the latest round of highly insensitive words aimed at the politician.

The US president attended a rally in Moon Township, Pittsburgh where he accused the Somali-American politician of trying to run the country, in what is seen by critics as a racist attack.

"How about Omar of Minnesota?" he told the crowd.

"We're going to win the state of Minnesota because of her, they say. She's telling us how to run our country. How did you do where you came from? How's your country doing? She's going to tell us - she's telling us how to run our country," he said.

His latest rant has been seen as racially insensitive, and his comment implies Omar is not an American.

Omar is a US citizen. She arrived in the country as a child refugee from Somalia and is a naturalised citizen.

She took to Twitter to respond to Trump's words: 

"Firstly, this is my country & I am a member of the House that impeached you," she wrote.

"Secondly, I fled civil war when I was 8. An 8-year-old doesn't run a country even though you run our country like one."

This isn't the first time Trump has used "us vs them" rhetoric to attack the congresswoman. Speaking at a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma earlier this year, Trump claimed Omar was seeking to corrupt "our country".

"Omar is going to be very much involved in a Biden government," he said at the time, referring to the upcoming elections.

"They will put this hate-filled, America-bashing socialist front and centre in deciding the fate of your family and deciding the fate of your country."

Such rhetoric has been called racist and exclusionary.

During a rally last week in Minnesota, Trump called Omar an "extremist" and accused the Democrats of wanting to allow Somali and Yemeni refugees who he said were coming from "Jihadist regions".

He also called Somali nationals he deported "hardened criminals" who are "back in their country where they can do all the complaining they want".

Ilhan Omar is no fan of the US president. Last week, during a lengthy interview, she referred to Trump as a "racist", and said comments he has made about her fuels further racist attacks.

"I happen to embody multiple marginal identities. I'm a woman, I'm black, I'm a refugee, an immigrant, a Muslim and I wear a hijab. And all of those are identities that have been vilified by the right... and weaponised by Donald Trump," the 37-year-old told The Independent at the time.

"For me, that understanding allows me to be resolved in the ways in which I unapologetically show up, advocate for policies that make our country a more equitable society."

She added: "America… for so many people living abroad, including myself when I lived in a refugee camp, is a place where people do get an opportunity to fulfil their promise.

"And the idea that the United States has been seen as a place of refuge, as a place where as my grandfather used to say 'eventually everyone becomes an American’, is now being led by a xenophobic, racist tyrant, who doesn’t understand anything that is fundamental to the American identity - that's a shock to many people."

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