Gambia’s government said it is appalled by U.S. President Donald J. Trump’s comments referring to Africans and Haitians as people from “shithole” countries, demanding an apology.
The Gambia, mainland Africa’s smallest nation strongly denounced the remarks made by America’s contentious president in the White House during a meeting with lawmakers in the Oval Office.
“The Government of the Republic of The Gambia is appalled by the remarks and finds it inconceivable that a President of a country regarded by many as one of the most tolerant and democratic countries in the world would utter such racial remarks,” said Gambia’s Foreign Minister Ousainou Darboe.
“Such disparaging remark compromises the core values of tolerance and democracy in America. The Government of The Gambia, therefore, calls on President Trump to withdraw his remarks and give a fitting apology to the African continent and Haiti.”
Senegal’s Macky Sall and Ghana’s Nana Akufo-Addo are among African leaders that scolded Trump for the comment that has become the center of the racial debate in the U.S. this month.
“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” he asked about Haiti, African nations and El Salvador, according to people in the room.
The Washington Post’s reporting on his comment immediately began days of analysis of what he might have meant, if he actually used a different word (such as “shithouse”) and, naturally, what he might have meant by that word, if he used it.
Several African countries summoned U.S. ambassadors to give an explanation to the “shithole” remarks. Top US diplomats in South Africa and Ghana were called on to meet with those governments.
Haiti, Botswana and Senegal have also summoned diplomats over the matter, and more diplomats are expected to be called this week after the African Union and Africa’s representative at the United Nations gave a strongly worded condemnation.