Washington: Protesters have slammed what they called US presidential nominee Donald Trump’s bigotry and xenophobia in rallies held on the first day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio.
United in their message against the celebrity tycoon, the protesters marched on Monday in the Cleveland area outside the security parameter where the convention was being held under tight security, Al Jazeera reported.
Approximately a third of Cleveland’s police officers were deployed around the convention area, and approximately 2,500 others from different areas were brought in to help, as the city expects 50,000 visitors during the three-day convention.
Republican delegates attending the convention to officially nominate Trump as their nominee for president should realise that there was “another America with a different message against the hate and fear that Trump is spreading,” Al Jazeera quoted said Tom Burke, spokesman for The Coalition to Stop Trump and March on the RNC – a bloc of 40 groups, as saying.
“We are hoping to impact the election and build a movement that will outlast the elections to oppose racism, to oppose anti-immigration and to stand up for Muslims and other religious minorities in this country,” he told Al Jazeera.
Throughout his campaign, the business mogul has raised the ire of many Americans with controversial statements; he declared he would build a wall at the border with Mexico to prevent immigrants from entering the country irregularly and proposed to ban Muslims from entering the US.
The former reality TV star made his incendiary proposals against Muslims, from banning to scrutinising them, a pillar of his campaign.
Since the Paris, San Bernardino, Orlando and Nice attacks, Trump has sought to cast himself as tough on national security and able to address the issue of “terrorism”, Al Jazeera noted.
In Cleveland, members of the Muslim community gathered to denounce Trump’s rhetoric, which some said “was dividing American in two”.
At The convention, there some 5,000 delegates representing the country’s 50 states, the District of Colombia and five US territories.
Those delegates will be in charge of formalising Trump’s designation as the party’s presidential candidate, who will then contest the November 8 election with Democratic rival Hillary Clinton, who will in turn be nominated next week at her party’s convention in Philadelphia.
The Republican National Convention kicked off after Trump announced on July 15 that his running mate and vice-presidential candidate will be Indiana Governor Mike Pence.