Republican candidates target Muslims after Brussels bombings

US Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Ted Cruz call for measures against Muslims after Brussels attacks

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Ted Cruz speak at their own rallies.

US Republican presidential candidates, billionaire Donald Trump and Texas Senator Ted Cruz, have targeted Muslims after a DAESH terror attack that killed at least 31 people in Brussels on Tuesday.

GOP front-runner, Trump, said that Muslims were failing to report suspicious activity and they must do more to help prevent attacks.

"When they see trouble they have to report it, they are not reporting it, they are absolutely not reporting it and that's a big problem," Trump said in an interview broadcast on Wednesday on Britain's ITV television.

Trump, who has called for a ban on Muslims entering the United States, said it was "a disgrace" that one of the suspects behind last November's attacks in Paris had been found after a long manhunt by police in the area of Brussels where he lived.

"I don't know what it is. It's like they're protecting each other but they're really doing very bad damage. They have to open up to society, they have to report the bad ones," Trump said.

Cruz called for law enforcement to step up their patrol policing of Muslim neighbourhoods in the US.

"We need to empower law enforcement to patrol and secure Muslim neighbourhoods before they become radicalised," the Texas senator said in a statement.

Trump said that Cruz’s suggestion is a “good idea” that he supports “100 percent.”

The Republican front-runner also intensified his past calls for the US to engage in harsher interrogation techniques, arguing that Belgium could have prevented the bombings had it tortured a suspect in last year's Paris attacks who was arrested last week.

"Waterboarding would be fine. If they can expand the laws, I would do a lot more than waterboarding," Trump said on NBC's "Today" programme, adding that he believed torture could produce useful leads. "You have to get the information from these people."

Democrats slam GOP candidates

Republican candidates were slammed by Democratic presidential candidates over their comments against the Muslim society in the US.

“I don't want to respond to his constant stream of insults. I find it, you know, really at this point absurd,” Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton said.

Another Democratic candidate, Bernie Sanders, also slammed the Republican candidates saying taking measures for Muslims would be “unconstitutional” and “wrong.”

“That would be unconstitutional, it would be wrong,” he explained. “We are fighting a terrorist organisation, a barbaric organisation that is killing innocent people. We are not fighting a religion.”


TRTWorld and agencies