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'Ours is not a shithole country': South Africa hits back at Trump

UN calls US president's remarks 'racist'

Donald Trump. Photo: Reuters

Donald Trump. Photo: Reuters

Comments by US 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.

"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 US, 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."

Trump's comments also drew fire from the United Nations, which slammed his words as "racist". 

"There is no other word one can use but 'racist'," UN human rights spokesman Rupert Colville told a Geneva news briefing when asked about the comments. "You cannot dismiss entire countries and continents as 'shitholes', whose entire populations, who are not white, are therefore not welcome."

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