No.10 On Donald Trump's Orlando Tweet: Focus On The Families Affected

Think of the dead, injured and their loved ones

13/06/2016 13:08

No.10 Downing Street has reacted to Donald Trump's controversial Tweets about the Orlando shootings, by urging a focus on the victims and their families.

The Prime Minister's official spokeswoman said that David Cameron's main priority was in helping the US authorities cope with the aftermath of the massacre at the gay nightclub.

Within hours of the shootings, Trump had Tweeted that he appreciated “the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism".

His remarks were swiftly condemned as a crass attempt to politicise the massacre and legitimise his call for a ban on Muslims travelling to the US.

When asked by HuffPost UK directly to comment on Trump's remarks, the PM's spokeswoman said: "The Prime Minister is very clear, as we would be here in the UK, that at the moment it is important that the US authorities are dealing with the situation.

"The right priority is to help all those that have been affected, their friends and families. And that's what people should be focusing on."

The spokeswoman added: "We are shocked at the shooting. Our thoughts are very much with those affected and the families of those who have lost their lives, who are desperately waiting for news and those injured.

"We are in close contact with the US authorities. We have had consular officials go down to Orlando and we will continue to at what ways we can support the US authorities at this terrible time."

Keith Srakocic/AP
Donald Trump

Trump, who is now the presumptive Republican nominee for this year's Presidential election, said last year that he wanted to ban all Muslims from entering the US in the wake of the San Bernardino and Paris terror attacks.

His Tweet came shortly after the deadliest mass shooting in US history, which claimed the lives of 50 people, with 53 still in hospital, some with critical injuries.

The suspected shooter has been named as Omar Mateen, a 29-year-old US citizen.

The gunman was killed by officers following a three-hour hostage situation at gay club Pulse Orlando in the early hours of Sunday morning. 

Trump's remarks were met by a backlash from a Hillary Clinton staffer and others

The attack is being investigated as an act of terrorism and a state of emergency has been declared in Florida.

So-called Islamic State’s Amaq news agency said on Sunday that the militant group was responsible for the shooting, Reuters reports.

Downing Street said it was unaware at this stage of any British victims of the Orlando shootings.

Isabel Infantes/EMPICS Entertainment
David Cameron and Barack Obama outside No.10 in April

Relations between Cameron and Trump have been poor since the PM lashed out at the billionaire's proposed ban on Muslims as "divisive", "stupid" and "wrong".

Cameron went further recently, saying Trump's plan was "dangerous" because it undermined the fight against terrorism.

Trump, who is due to arrive in the UK on the eve of the EU referendum next week, has given the 'Brexit' camp a boost by saying he would work hard as President on a new trade deal if Britain quit the European Union.

Also on HuffPost

Suggest a correction