Visibly angry Jeremy Corbyn tells Donald Trump to ‘grow up’ over immigration

The Labour leader says the US President-elect's treatment of Mexico and ‘absurd and abusive language towards Muslims’ should be challenged

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Jeremy Corbyn has told Donald Trump to “grow up” over his treatment of immigrants in the US.

Speaking on the Andrew Marr Show, the Labour leader criticised the President-elect’s stance on Mexico and his “absurd and abusive” language towards Muslims.

Mr Corbyn described the “absolute anger and outrage” felt by his Mexican wife Laura Alvarez and her family at President-elect Trump’s proposals to build a wall at the US-Mexican border.

“Donald Trump should grow up and recognise the American economy actually depends on migrant labour,” he said.

“The treatment of Mexico by the United States, just as much as his absurd and abusive language towards Muslims is something that has to be challenged.”

The Labour leader said “anger and left-behind America” had led to President-elect Trump’s surprise victory last week, especially in Ohio and the other deindustrialised states in America’s rust belt.

“Trump decided to use the populist agenda. He blamed Muslims Mexicans, he blamed Muslims, he blamed women, he blamed anyone he could think of, except the very corporate America that in many ways he actually represents,” he said.

After the the Republican candidate’s victory, Theresa May said she looked forward to working with President-elect Trump and said Britain and America would remain “strong and close partners”.

Mr Corbyn said his third wife Ms Alvarez, who he met six years ago at a Latin American support group, was a “proud Mexican” who was also proud to live in the UK.

“I’m looking forward to the conversation between my wife and Donald Trump,” he said. “She is a proud Mexican and she is proud to live here as well. All of us want to live in a world where you can tolerate and deal with each other.”

The Labour leader also said immigration would come down if he were elected Prime Minister due to policies aimed at ending worker exploitation and wage cutting, rather than setting controls.

“I think it will be lower if we deal with the issues of wage undercutting, deal with the issues of exploitation,” he said, adding: “I think we should also recognise that the migrants that have come to this country work.

“The migrants that come to this country contribute and pay taxes, and actually our National Health Service would simply not survive without the level of migrant labour, and migrant doctors and others, that are here, because we haven’t invested enough in high skills within our own economy.

“Communities coming together to improve education, and health, and housing work better together – blaming minorities doesn't build houses.”

Mr Corbyn accused Ukip of the same “nasty” brand of politics as France’s far-right National Front, stating: “They both attempt the same shallow populist nasty appeal.”

He was highly critical of National Front leader Marine Le Pen, saying: “She uses awful and absurd language against Muslims in France.

“The reality is she does not have an economic answer to problems faced by left communities in France any more than Ukip has an economic answer to the left behind communities in Britain.”