Trump Ambassador Signaled Support for Tommy Robinson
The Trump administration has further thrown their support behind Tommy Robinson, who was arrested in late May outside a courthouse in Leeds, England, while making video recordings about a trial related to child molestation and jailed for 13 months.
Robinson has become a focal point for those defending free speech. He was covering a growing trend of crime and violence, particularly against children, and took video footage outside the court building of a highly contentious rape case. His Facebook Livestream was abruptly cut short when police officers arrested him on grounds of a so-called “breach of peace.”
Last year, Robinson was arrested for a similar crime, attempting to film defendants outside a courthouse during a gang rape trial in Canterbury. His sentence was suspended, but he was warned that a repeat offense would lead to prison time.
In May, Donald Trump Jr. tweeted out his support of Robinson saying "Reason #1776 for the original #brexit. Don’t let America follow in those footsteps."
Now Sam Brownback, former governor of Kansas and now U.S. Ambassador for International Religious Freedom, raised the jailing of Robinson during a meeting that covered a range of “religious freedom issues.”
He said that if Britain did not treat Robinson more sympathetically, the Trump administration might be compelled to criticize Britain’s handling of the case, according to the two sources in contact with organizers of the planned pro-Robinson demonstration.
The sources said Robinson’s supporters, who have also been in touch with the Trump administration about the issue, were concerned that he could be attacked by other prisoners.
Soon after the news of Brownback lobbying on behalf of Robinson, there was a rally to support Tommy Robinson this Saturday that broke out on the streets of London.
The rally joined forces with a small procession of U.K. Trump supporters who initially gathered outside the U.S. Embassy in Nine Elms, Battersea. Some waved "Britain Loves Trump" placards, wore Mr. Trump's red Make America Great Again caps and cheered at mentions of the president.
This was the second rally in support of Tommy, the first occuring on June 9 where violent clashes broke out as police officers attempted to keep the demonstration under control. Reports suggested between 3,000 and 6,000 Tommy Robinson protesters turned up at Whitehall for the demonstration, with a heavy police presence on hand.
The march was kept at a distance from the counter-protest in Parliament Square, the day after an estimated 250,000 rallied through London in opposition to the US president. A hardline U.S. conservative think tank, Middle East Forum, have claimed credit for funding the demonstrations. In a post on its website last week, the group took responsibility for financing both the Free Tommy Robinson rally on June 9th, and the rally on July 14th.
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