WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump retweeted a series of inflammatory videos Wednesday purporting to show violence being committed by Muslims.
Trump retweeted them from Jayda Fransen, the deputy leader of the far-right group Britain First, a small fringe group whose profile was elevated by Trump’s attention.
The group’s tweets read: “VIDEO: Islamist mob pushes teenage boy off roof and beats him to death!” and “VIDEO: Muslim Destroys a Statue of Virgin Mary!” and “VIDEO: Muslim migrant beats up Dutch boy on crutches!” The origins of the videos could not immediately be determined.
Britain First is a far-right group that opposes multiculturalism and what it calls the “Islamization” of Britain.
It has run candidates in local and national elections, with little success, and has campaigned against the construction and expansion of mosques.
Trump did not offer any explanation for why he retweeted the videos, and the White House did not immediately respond to request for comment.
The retweets came amid a flurry of early-morning Trump posts.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations condemned Trump.
The group’s executive director, Nihad Awad, said in a statement that Trump is “clearly telling members of his base that they should hate Islam and Muslims.”
Awad said Trump’s posts “amount to incitement to violence against American Muslims.” Awad is calling on political and religious leaders to condemn Trump’s tweets.
Awad said that on Twitter, the council has recorded 3,296 anti-Muslim incidents this year.
“We haven’t heard a peep from you. Some president,” he said.
It’s not the first time Trump has retweeted inflammatory content or posts from controversial Twitter accounts.
He has shared messages from accounts that appeared to have ties to white nationalist groups.
He has retweeted a conservative Trump supporter who used social media to draw attention to “pizzagate,” an unfounded conspiracy theory that claims Democrats harbor child sex slaves at a pizza restaurant.
He has also retweeted doctored videos, including one that appeared to show him hitting Hillary Clinton with a golf ball.
Throughout his presidential campaign, Trump offered anti-Muslim commentary, saying he would “strongly consider” closing mosques and insisting that “Islam hates us.”
As president he has sought to ban travel from majority-Muslim countries. He said earlier this year that “we have to stop radical Islamic terrorism.”
After Trump retweeted the videos, Fransen quickly responded on Twitter, saying: “DONALD TRUMP HIMSELF HAS RETWEETED THESE VIDEOS AND HAS AROUND 44 MILLION FOLLOWERS! GOD BLESS YOU TRUMP! GOD BLESS AMERICA!”
Fransen has been charged with causing religiously aggravated harassment over leaflets and videos that were distributed during a criminal trial earlier this year.
She has separately been charged with using “threatening, abusive or insulting words or behavior” over a speech she made in Northern Ireland in August. She is currently on bail.
She was convicted last year of religiously aggravated harassment and fined after hurling abuse at a Muslim woman wearing a hijab.