A fresh row has broken out between US President Donald Trump and the UK government as outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May hit out at his “completely unacceptable” language after the US President was branded racist over a Twitter outburst.
In a tweet on Sunday night, Mr Trump said it was “so sad” to see Democrats supporting the women.
While the US President did not name the four, he is believed to have been referring to congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib.
Only Omar, from Somalia, is foreign-born.
Downing Street made clear the prime minister’s view of Mr Trump’s comments.
“Her view is that the language which was used to refer to the women was completely unacceptable,” her official spokesman said.
The spokesman said he was not aware of any plans for Mrs May to speak to the president.
Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the president’s comments were “not OK and diplomatic politeness should not stop us saying so, loudly and clearly”.
The President of the United States telling elected politicians – or any other Americans for that matter – to ‘go back’ to other countries is not OK, and diplomatic politeness should not stop us saying so, loudly and clearly. https://t.co/HorD7wQOvP
— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) July 15, 2019
Mr Trump hit out at the congresswomen “who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world” and suggested “why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came”.
The latest row follows the storm created by the leak of sensitive diplomatic messages from the UK’s ambassador in Washington, Sir Kim Darroch, which prompted the envoy’s resignation.
The Metropolitan Police are investigating the leak, but have been accused of being “heavy handed” in their approach to the reporting of further releases.
Former Brexit secretary David Davis called for senior officer Neil Basu to be pulled from the investigation after he urged journalists in possession of leaked government documents to return them, warning any further publication from the dispatches could result in prosecution.
Mr Davis wrote to The Times accusing Mr Basu of “straying beyond his brief” and called for commissioner Cressida Dick to put the investigation in the hands of “an officer who puts preservation of our free press ahead of protection of the state’s reputation”.
He wrote that prosecuting journalists for “embarrassing the state is not what we do in the UK”.
The prime minister’s official spokesman said: “The leak was completely unacceptable and the person who leaked the documents should now face the consequences.”
Sir Kim resigned last week, saying his position had become “impossible” following the leak of diplomatic cables in which he described Mr Trump’s White House as “inept” and “dysfunctional”.