Fri, Nov 03, 2017 - Page 7 News List

Trump tweets that attacker should get death penalty

AFP, WASHINGTON

US President Donald Trump on Wednesday called for the man charged with carrying out a New York City truck rampage that killed eight people to be put to death.

“NYC terrorist was happy as he asked to hang ISIS flag in his hospital room. He killed 8 people, badly injured 12. SHOULD GET DEATH PENALTY!” Trump wrote on Twitter, using an acronym for the Islamic State group.

The president had earlier said he would consider sending Sayfullo Saipov, a 29-year-old Uzbek immigrant, to Guantanamo Bay, the US military detention center in Cuba that has been used to indefinitely hold suspected foreign militants, a practice that has drawn repeated criticism from rights groups.

Trump also urged swift repeal of the visa lottery program that brought the suspect to the US and ordered still tighter scrutiny of immigrants already subject to what he calls “extreme vetting.”

“We have to get much tougher, much smarter, and less politically correct,” Trump said.

He also said the US justice system for dealing with such cases must be strengthened, declaring, “What we have right now is a joke and it’s a laughingstock.”

The US Department of Homeland Security confirmed that Saipov entered the US under the Diversity Visa Lottery Program, which gives people from countries with low rates of immigration an opportunity to immigrate to the US.

Trump also took to Twitter early on Wednesday to blame Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat who represents New York, for the visa program.

Schumer did back the lottery program as a member of the US House of Representatives when it was approved with the support of both parties in 1990. It was signed by then US-president George H.W. Bush, a Republican.

Additional reporting by AP

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