SHAFAQNA – Leading figures from the Muslim community have invited Donald Trump to visit a mosque when he comes to Scotland at the end of this month.
The controversial presumptive Republican presidential nominee should “learn more about the Muslims that he offends almost every time he opens his mouth,” they said in a joint statement.
Trump attracted worldwide condemnation after he demanded a temporary ban on all Muslims entering America following the killing of 14 people at a health center in San Bernardino, Calif., by a Muslim couple who are believed to have been radicalized.
The tycoon also claimed that Muslims nursed a “hatred” for Americans.
His comments led to calls from Scottish ministers and members of Parliament for the Home Secretary Theresa May to ban Trump from Britain for “hate-preaching.”
Trump is due to fly into Scotland later this month to re-open his Turnberry golf course and hotel, in Ayrshire, after a £200 million ($290 million) revamp.
Hafiz Ghafoor of Edinburgh’s Annandale Mosque, and Munawar Hussain, secretary of Roxburgh Street Mosque & Islamic Center, also in Edinburgh, accused the billionaire of “ignorance” and invited him to visit their mosques.
There, they said, he should educate himself “before he makes another inflammatory speech.”
They said: “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.
“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 a record of promoting interfaith relations and have also worked with the homeless.
The call was echoed by Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie, who has been 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 neighbors. 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. He can see first hand the work that they are doing to help marginalized groups like the homeless and then try to justify his outlandish claims.”
Trump is already facing demonstrations against his visit while he is in the country, under the banner “Scotland against Trump.”
He had been due to arrive in Scotland on the day that the result of the EU vote is announced, June 24.
However, he announced last week that he has changed his plans and will land the day before voters go to the polls, prompting speculation that he intends to make an intervention in the referendum.
Cameron has condemned Trump’s remarks about Muslims as “stupid, divisive and wrong.”
But Cameron has also said that he would be “very happy” to meet Trump in the U.K. before the presidential vote (in November).
Last week an exclusive BMG poll for The Herald showed that 42% of the U.K. public think (Cameron) should not meet Trump, while another 31% said that he should — but only to criticize him face to face.
During his campaign for his party’s nomination Trump has also been criticized for demanding that Mexico pay to erect a wall at its border to prevent immigrants crossing into the U.S.
He was also attacked after he said that women should be punished if they have an abortion. He later walked back from that claim.