The White House says President Donald Trump has spoken with Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo following the deadly truck attack on a bike path near the World Trade Center.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders also says Mr. Trump’s calls for increasing extreme vetting of immigrants are “something that frankly the president has been talking about for a long time.” The man arrested following Tuesday’s attack is from Uzbekistan.
Sanders was asked on Wednesday about the president’s critical tweets about New York Sen. Chuck Schumer. Sanders says the Republican president “has not blamed” the New York Democrat and “doesn’t feel that the senator is responsible for the attack.”
Sanders said the Trump administration considers the terrorist to be an “enemy combatant” who is eligible to be sent to the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The president, she said, “certainly would support it if he felt like that was the best move.” But the determination hasn’t been made whether to move him out of the civilian justice system.
Meanwhile, governments around the world condemned the terror attack.
In Israel, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu phoned Gov. Andrew Cuomo to express his solidarity and said that his country stands with the United States in the face of “yet another horrible Islamist terror attack.” He said that Israel prayed for the victims and their families. “Together,” he said, “we will defeat this scourge.”
Iran’s Foreign Ministry condemned the truck attack which they referred to as a “terrorist” assault. “A serious approach coinciding with honesty and transparency of all nations” is the only way to “uproot” terrorism,” the statement said.
Saudi Arabia offered its condolences to the families of the victims and reiterated its “rejection and condemnation of such terrorist acts.” Kuwait’s ruling emir sent a cable to President Donald Trump expressing his condolences. Qatar, too, offered its “full solidarity with the U.S. government and its support for all measures taken to maintain security.”
The president of Uzbekistan offered his country’s assistance in investigating the attack by an Uzbek national. Previously, Uzbek officially never commented or acknowledged any security incidents abroad involving Uzbek nationals.