#IStandWithIlhan: Support for Omar after ‘send her back’ chants at Trump rally

(J Scott Applewhite/AP) Credit: (J Scott Applewhite/AP)

Congresswoman Ilhan Omar has received an outpouring of support from around the world, after Donald Trump supporters chanted “send her back” at a rally for the US president.

The chants at a rally in North Carolina came as Mr Trump doubled down on a series of widely criticised tweets in which he said four Democratic congresswomen could “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came”.

While he did not state who the four congresswomen were in his original tweets, he rounded on the four by name at the North Carolina rally, criticising Ms Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib.

Trump's targets (from left to right) Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ayanna Pressley. Credit: AP Images

When Mr Trump spoke about Ms Omar – who was born in Somalia and moved to the US as a refugee when she was a child – the crowd responded with chants of “send her back”.

The Twitter hashtag #IStandWithIlhan started trending worldwide, with politicians, and public figures pledging their support for the US congresswoman.

Ms Omar responded by quoting Maya Angelou poem Still I Rise, and later tweeting: “I am where I belong, at the people’s house and you’re just gonna have to deal!”

Among the many Democrats stating their support for Ms Omar were a number of contenders for the presidency.

Kamala Harris said the spectacle “defiles the office of the President”, while Elizabeth Warren said that “calling out his racism, xenophobia, and misogyny is imperative”.

Jon Favreau, a former member of Barack Obama’s staff, described the spectacle as “one of the most chilling and horrifying things I’ve ever seen in politics”.

In the UK, London mayor Sadiq Khan – himself a frequent target for Mr Trump’s invective – said the four congresswomen targeted by Mr Trump “represent hope for the future”.

Labour MP Tulip Siddiq said the “racist rally sends shivers down my spine”, and her party colleague Jess Phillips said: “This is what fascism looks like. We must fight it at home and abroad.”

Ed Davey, a contender in the Liberal Democrat leadership contest, wrote: “This is heartbreaking and terrifying. If we don’t learn from history we are doomed to repeat it.

“All of us who stand for liberal values, and for decency, must stand up to Trump’s disgusting racism and the hate he sows.”

Mr Trump has repeatedly defended his comments about the congresswomen, tweeting recently: “I don’t have a Racist bone in my body!”

However, the Democratic-led US House of Representatives disagreed, voting earlier this week to brand the words as “racist comments”.

Theresa May’s official spokesman said: “I don’t know if the Prime Minister has seen it but as I said earlier in the week the president’s comments in respect of the congresswomen were completely unacceptable and that remains the case.”

Tory leadership contenders Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt both condemned Mr Trump's remarks, however have refused to brand him a 'racist'.