Horror and fear swept through Muslim countries after Donald Trump was confirmed as President of the Unites States.
The Republican made his most controversial remarks about Islam in December last year, sparking anger among the world’s 1.5billion followers of Islam when he called for a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. after a mass shooting in California.
Muslims across Asia were struggling this morning to accept the news the populist candidate will take office in the White House.
‘Americans have just screwed the world yet again,’ said Syed Tashfin Chowdhury, a Bangladeshi who has several close friends in the US.
Thousands in the country watched in shock as the results rolled in and Facebook lit up with horrified reactions.
‘I’m very afraid, will there be more wars? Will America attack Muslim countries again?’ asked Indonesian activist Alijah Diete as Donald Trump edged closer to a shock victory in the US election.
Trump sensationally won the White House race this morning as Hillary Clinton phoned him at 2.30am local time to concede she had lost.
She made the private call shortly after sending her campaign chairman to give her supporters exactly the opposite message, that it was not over – a humiliating and bizarre end to a political career which had put her on the verge of being the first female president.
Instead a jubilant Trump headquarters erupted in cheers as the news broke.
Zuhairi Misrawi, an Islamic scholar from moderate Indonesian Islamic organisation Nahdlatul Ulama, reacted to the news by saying it would be seen as a powerplay for terrorists across the globe.
Meanwhile, at Trump headquarters, running mate Mike Pence was first to take the stage and said: ‘This is a historic night. The American people have spoken and the American people have elected their new champion.’
To chants of USA he said: ‘I come to this moment deeply humbled, grateful to God for his amazing grace.
‘I am mostly grateful to our president-elect, whose leadership and vision will make America great again.’
A teacher at a school in the United Arab Emirates said when he broke the news of the result to his class, children told him they would never be able to go to America again.
‘I didn’t think it would have this sort of affect.’ He said.
A senior Pakistani government official, speaking anonymously, called the news ‘absolutely atrocious and horrifying’ while others in the country also lamented the results.
‘I am disappointed to see Donald Trump winning because Hillary Clinton is a good woman, she is good for Pakistan and Muslims all over the world,’ said Ishaq Khan, 32, speaking at an Islamabad market.
‘She was talking about world peace – but Trump was talking about fighting against Muslims.’
The bizarre ending to Clinton’s political career came after Trump confounded pollsters at every turn, capturing one ‘swing’ state after another in a line of toppled dominoes that stretched across three time zones and now ends at the White House.
The last to fall was the Keystone State – after Florida, North Carolina, Georgia and Wisconsin all went to the Republican.
That gave him 274 votes in the electoral college – the winner is the first to achieve 270.
In Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country, there was growing nervousness about how the relationship with traditional ally the United States would shape up, and how a Trump presidency would affect relations between America and the Muslim world.
‘I am very concerned that the relationship between the US and Muslim countries will become tense again,’ said the female Muslim activist Diete, 47.
Nikken Suardini, who works for a law firm in the capital Jakarta, was concerned about the proposed Muslim ban, saying: ‘If he is elected president he will block Muslims from entering the US – well, that’s just not fair.’
There was also concern that tough anti-Islamic policies under Trump could fan Muslim extremism globally at a time when the world is struggling with a growing threat of Islamic terrorism.
Some observers were more sanguine as the 70-year-old maverick appeared heading for the White House, hoping that his populist rhetoric was aimed at winning votes and would not be translated into tough policies if he enters the White House.
Tahir Ashrafi, a senior Pakistani government cleric, said: ‘We hope that Trump’s remarks against Muslims were only to boost his campaign and he will realise that Muslims are a large population in the U.S.’