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Merkel: Fight Against Terror Does Not Justify Suspicion Against Muslims

German Chancellor Angela Merkel

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has sharply criticized U.S. President Donald Trump's order temporarily barring citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries from the United States, saying efforts to counter terrorism do not justify targeting people of a specific faith.

In remarks on January 30, Merkel said that the fight against terrorism is "essential" and should be "resolute."

But she said that this "in no way justifies general suspicion against people of a specific faith, in this case people of the Muslim faith or people of a certain background."

"In my opinion, this act runs contrary to the basic principles of international refugee help and international cooperation," Merkel said.

She said that the German "chancellery and the Foreign Ministry will do everything they can, especially for those dual citizens affected, to clear up the legal ramifications and to emphatically represent their interests under the law."

"We're clearly having close consultations with our European partners about this entire issue," Merkel added.

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters