Protesters have disrupted Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump’s speech at a New York City luncheon, denouncing his recent anti-Muslim rhetoric.
The demonstrators chanted “Trump is trying to bring us down, targeting people black and brown,” and tried to storm a side entrance into the speech on Friday.
Security guards forcibly removed a dozen of them at the $1,000-a-plate event at Manhattan’s The Plaza Hotel.
“Trump is exploiting a racial divide,” Zakarariah Kronemer, a protester, told local media. “It’s leading to violence in the Arab community [in America]. The people must interrupt him anywhere he is invited to speak.”
During the speech, a few protesters stood up to denounce Trump’s recent proposal to bar Muslims from entering the United States.
“I’m really frightened by that kind of rhetoric,” Martha Acklesberg, a member of the group Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, told theAssociated Press.
In Canada, pro-refugee and pro-Muslim activists gathered in front of the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Toronto to protest against the billionaire businessman’s anti-Muslim statements.
“We can’t allow hateful anti-Muslim comments like Trump’s to go unchallenged,” said Abu Azam, a House-person at the Hilton Hotel in downtown Toronto. “As a Muslim myself, I am encouraged to see Canadians from all walks of life standing up to reject Trump’s hateful, vile bigotry.”
Trump’s inflammatory comments against refugees and Muslims have provoked angry reactions from around the world.
Trump’s image and name have been pulled from a golf course in Dubai and Trump Towers Istanbul also says it is “assessing” its partnership with the real estate mogul.
The White House hopeful has stood up by his controversial comments. “I’m a person that has common sense. I’m a smart person. I know how to run things. I know how to make America great again.”