January 12, 2018 / 10:57 AM / 5 months ago

Trump comment on "shithole countries" extremely offensive to South Africa, official says

EAST LONDON, South Africa (Reuters) - Comments by U.S. President Donald Trump referring to some African nations as “shithole countries” are extremely offensive to South Africa, a senior official with the ruling African National Congress party said on Friday.

U.S. President Donald Trump attends a signing ceremony for the Interdict Act into law, to provide Customs and Border Protection agents with the latest screening technology on the fight against the opioid crisis, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington D.C., U.S., January 10, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

“Ours is not a shithole country, neither is Haiti or any other country in distress,” Jessie Duarte, the deputy secretary general of the ANC, said at a news conference in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province.

Two sources told Reuters that Trump on Thursday questioned why the United States would want to have immigrants from Haiti and African nations, referring to some as “shithole countries”.

“It’s not as if the United States doesn’t have problems. There is unemployment in the U.S., there are people who don’t have healthcare services,” Duarte told reporters.

She added: “We would not deign to make comments as derogatory as that about any country that has any kind of socioeconomic or other difficulties.”

Reporting by Ed Stoddard; Writing by Alexander Winning; Editing by Alison Williams

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