London's First Muslim Mayor Rejects Trump's Offer to Be "Exception" to Ban

London's first Muslim mayor, Sadiq Khan, says Trump's rhetoric "plays into the hands of extremists."

Image via Steve Punter

Sadiq Khan, London's first Muslim mayor, is none too pleased with presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's recent comments. Trump, in an interview with the New York Times Monday, theorized that Khan could be an "exception" to his controversial Muslim ban proposal. Khan firmly denounced this invitation Tuesday, revealing that he was instead pulling for a Hillary Clinton victory.

"This isn't just about me," Khan told BBC News. "I don't want to be the exception to be allowed to go to America."

He added that his refusal of Trump's invitation is about something much more important: community. "It's about my friends, my family, and everyone who comes from a background similar to mine, anywhere in the world," he said. Khan argued that Trump's rhetoric is not only damaging the international view of the United States, but is threatening the safety of everyday people across the globe.

"Trump's ignorant view of Islam could make both our countries less safe," he said. "It risks alienating mainstream Muslims around the world and plays into the hands of the extremists."

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Khan officially became the mayor of London Saturday, with the Times promptly declaring the progressive candidate "one of the most prominent Muslim politicians in the West." Speaking on Khan's victory, Trump said he was "happy" to see it.

"I think it's a very good thing," he said. "I hope he does a very good job because frankly that would be very, very good."

Khan's office did not immediately respond to Complex's request for comment.


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Since becoming the presumptive GOP nominee following the swift exits of rivals Ted Cruz and John Kasich, Trump has not shied away from the controversy of his Muslim proposal. Shortly after Kasich's surprise campaign suspension, Trump told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that backing down simply wasn't in the cards.

"They have to save themselves," Trump said of the possibility of working together with Muslim countries to fight terrorism. "We can help them, but they have to save themselves."

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