After visiting the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted on Wednesday that he was treated warmly by the community and that the media's portrayal of protests is "fake news."
Trump's visit caused immediate controversy in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood as demonstrations, initiated by local Jewish activists, sang Jewish prayers and marched condemning Trump and demanding he denounce white nationalism before visiting the city.
The visit comes after the deadliest anti-Semitic terror attack in U.S. history where 11 were killed by an anti-immigrant shooter on Saturday.
After the visit, Trump tweeted: "Small protest was not seen by us, staged far away. The Fake News stories were just the opposite-Disgraceful!"
President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrived in Pittsburgh on Tuesday afternoon joined by his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and his daughter Ivanka, who converted to Judaism in 2009, along with Israel’s ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, who grew up in an American-Jewish household.
- Trump, the Jews and anti-Semitism: A Dangerous Double Game
- Under Trump, Violence Against Jews Will Only Rise. We Must Be Prepared
- Thousands of U.S. Jews Deliver Defiant Message at Pittsburgh Protest
Thousands demonstrated just one block north of the synagogue on Tuesday evening. One after another, the main speakers at the demonstration discussed their Jewish backgrounds before turning to criticize Trump for his policies, his rhetoric and his decision to visit Pittsburgh at a time when the Jewish community was still burying its dead.