Days after Donald Trump called for barring Muslims from entering the US, a Qatar Airways executive warned the US Republican presidential frontrunner that “he will not be welcome” in the Muslim world.
“I can say that the reaction as a Muslim, I have taken offense to this, and especially when it is coming out from a friend of mine,” Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said, claiming he is friends with Trump.
“I didn’t expect him to be so naïve to make such statements,” he added.
Further, the airline’s top official said he believes Trump was trying to gain a political mileage out of his anti-Muslim rhetoric. “[H]e is not realising what he is mentioning is detriment (sic) to his own interests in the election,” he said.
“He is also not realising that he has investments in Muslim countries and he will not be welcome there anymore. So I think what he is saying is not in the best interests of the relationship between him and the Muslim world,” Al Baker added.
However, the CEO claimed that he anticipated focus of the US elections will soon shift. “I think there will be a lot more important issues for him. You know he’s already getting a lot of negative reaction from even very pro, and very right-wing politicians, so I think this will die down eventually and people will think about more important issues that is now facing the United States,” Al Baker said.
Trump triggered an international uproar when he made his comments in response to last week’s deadly shootings in California by two Muslims who authorities said were radicalised. However, during his campaign rallies, Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed he has Muslim friends who support what he is proposing.