The mother of a backpacker murdered in Australia has slammed Donald Trump for his assertion that her death was a terrorist attack, arguing that her daughter's death was being used to justify the "insane persecution of innocent people."
British backpackers Mia Ayliffe-Chung and Tom Jackson died after they were stabbed at a hostel in Queensland in August 2016. The incident is included in the White House's list of 78 "under-reported terrorism" attacks, released on Monday.
Rosie Ayliffe, Mia's mother, took exception to the White House's claims in an open letter posted on Facebook Tuesday. It's alleged that Ayad used the Arabic phrase "Allahu Akbar" during the attack and his arrest, but police have long ago eliminated the possibility of extremism. They are however investigating if he had a romantic interest in Ayliffe-Chung, according to ABC News.
"This vilification of [a] whole nation states and their people based on religion is a terrifying reminder of the horror that can ensue when we allow ourselves to be led by ignorant people into darkness and hatred. My daughter's death will not be used to further this insane persecution of innocent people."
The White House's list supplements Trump's comments at the MacDill Air Force Base in Florida on Monday that the "very dishonest press" don't adequately report on certain terrorist attacks, a list which includes the Sydney siege and the 2015 Paris attacks.'