Washington: Criticised by political opponents for his alleged “Muslim ban” policy, US President Donald Trump on Friday said his administration will do everything in its power to defend and protect religious liberty of America, which will remain a tolerant society where all faiths are respected.
“I want to express clearly today, to the American people, that my administration will do everything in its power to defend and protect religious liberty in our land,” Mr Trump said in his first address to the annual National Prayer Breakfast.
“America must forever remain a tolerant society where all face are respected and where all of our citizens can feel safe and secure,” said Mr Trump.
Asserting that terrorism is a fundamental threat to religious freedom, the US President said, “It must be stopped and it will be stopped. It may not be pretty for a little while. It will be stopped.” Mr Trump said that in recent days, his administration has begun to take necessary action to achieve the goal of making the US safe and secure.
“Our nation has the most generous immigration system in the world. But these are those and there are those that would exploit that generosity to undermine the values that we hold so dear. We need security,” said Mr Trump, whose move to impose a travel ban on people from seven Muslim-majority countries has invited criticism and outrage at home and from abroad.
“There are those who would seek to enter our country for the purpose of spreading violence, or oppressing other people based upon their faith or their lifestyle, not right. We will not allow a beachhead of intolerance to spread in our nation.
Mr Trump said that in coming days, his administration will develop a system to help ensure that those admitted into the US fully embrace American values of religious and personal liberty.
“And that they reject any form of oppression and discrimination. We want people to come into our nation, but we want people to love us and to love our values, not to hate us and to hate our values,” he said.