LIVE: Trump wins US election


Follow US election night with Middle East Eye from Dearborn, Austin, New York, Seattle and London

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Last update: 
June 19 Jun 2018 10:48 UTC

The latest developments in the #USA2016 election race.


VIDEO: A Trump supporter's message to Muslims

With this live blog, MEE has tried to bring you the latest developments in the US presidential election. We hope you have found it worthwhile. And in the spirit of fairness and reconciliation, we leave you this final post from a Trump supporter:

MEE's reporter Areeb Ullah spoke to supporters of the now president-elect Donald Trump outside the Trump Tower in NYC on the eve of the election.

One supporter had a message to the Muslim community in particular, stating that they should see Trump as their "best friend."

Watch the full interview below:

Clinton: 'Never stop believing. Fighting for what is right is worth it'

Hillary Clinton concedes defeat in a speech in New York on Wednesday (Reuters)

Hillary Clinton is making her first speech since her defeat in Tuesday's presidential election and called on her supporters to accept Donald Trump's victory.

"Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and a chance to lead," she said, flanked by husband and former president Bill Clinton.

Acknowledging that her bid to become the first female president in American history had failed, she admitted: "We haven't shattered that glass ceiling. Some day someone will and hopefully sooner than we might think... To all the little girls who are watching this never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every opportunity in the world to pursue your own dreams."

Looking back on her long political career, she said: "Never stop believing. Fighting for what is right is worth it."

Former Klan 'grand wizard' thanks Assange for helping Trump take White House

A former 'grand wizard' of the white supremicist Klu Klux Klan movement has offered effusive thanks to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange for helping to deliver the White House to Donald Trump.

An image tweeted by former Klu Klux Klan leader David Dukes (Twitter)

Wikileaks published thousands of leaked emails sent by Hillary Clinton, Trump's opponent, while she was US Secretary of State, which were seized on by Trump and his supporters to accuse Clinton of criminal conduct.

The FBI has said it has found no evidence to prosecute Clinton, but the saga derailed the final weeks of her campaign.

"GOD BLESS WIKILEAKS - Julian Assange is a hero -> America owes this man one thing -> FREEDOM!!!," tweeted David Dukes, the founder of the the founder of the Knights of the KKK.

Dukes also tweeted an image of Trump astride an M1 Abrams tank and holding a high-powered rifle.

Read more about this story here.

Trump win a 'Phyrric victory' for Israel: Analyst

Yonatan Mendel, the director of the Israeli Strategic Forum at the Oxford Research Group think tank, tells Middle East Eye that it's still unclear what Trump's presidency will mean for Israel and Palestine but cautions the Israeli right against celebrating too wildly.

"Clinton and the Obama administration were ultimately very good at talking, but their commitment to peace changed nothing in reality," said Mendel.

"The Occupation of the West Bank continued under Obama, the blockade of Gaza continued under Obama, the expansion of settlements did not stop, and there is no reason to believe that things could have been different if Clinton was elected."

But Mendel said that any tilt towards Israel in American policy under Trump, and calls from the Israeli right for Trump to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, risked destabilising the situation.

"The Israeli-Palestinian conflict yearns for a just solution, a solution that would serve the interests of both Israelis and Palestinians, and any other solution means deepening asymmetries," he said.

"The celebrations of the Israeli right attest to a creeping danger. Right-wing settlers may enjoy Trump's victory but there is no doubt that this is a Phyrric victory for Israel - a victory that ends in failure and political catastrophe."


Syrian prisoner weighs in on Trump win

A Syrian who has been imprisoned since 2012 had the following to say upon hearing the news of Trump's win.

"I heard about Trump. They want the equitableness to be disappeared from this world. They want all the presidents from all over the world to be wrong.

"Who will judge the world now?"

Saudi FM congratulates Trump on Twitter

Taliban tell Trump to pull US forces from Afghanistan

The Taliban, for their part, called on Trump to withdraw all US forces from Afghanistan once he is in power.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told the Associated Press that a Trump administration "should allow Afghans to become a free nation and have relationships with other countries based on non-interference in each other's affairs."

The Taliban want American troops to go home (AFP)

Senior Al-Qaeda ideologue welcomes Trump win as 'start of America’s breakup'

Abu Muhammad al-Maqsidi, a senior al-Qaeda ideologue, welcomed the coming Trump presidency – but only as “the start of America’s breakup.”


File #ترامب

Translation:“ It may be that Trump’s state is the start of America’s breakup and its time of disintegration. The hot-headed man hurts the people closest to them thinking that this will benefit him according to what he said.”


File #ترامب

Translation: “Trump lays bare the real American mentality and their racism towards Muslims and Arab and everything. He exposes what his predecessors hid only for his victory to expose even more America and its lackeys.”

Iraqi PM takes to Twitter to congratulate president-elect Trump

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi took to Twitter to pass on his congratulations to the president-elect. Trump maintained throughout the campaign that he was against the 2003 Iraq War.


UAE and Qatar speak out on Trump victory

United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Khalifa wished Trump “success in his future tasks” according to the state news agency.

Qatar’s minister of foreign affairs, Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, also congratulated Trump on Twitter.


'President Clinton': Turkish paper calls the election - wrong

The mainstream Turkish newspaper Posta was so sure of a Clinton victory that its 9 November edition went to press the previous night with a full page spread on her win with the headline "First woman president".

The text read:
"The United States went to the polls yesterday to choose its 45th president. The Democratic Party candidate Hillary Clinton, wife of former president Bill Clinton and a former secretary of state, was in a neck-and-neck race with Republican candidate Donald Trump until the last minute. Stars like Jon Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen and Lady Gaga took to the stage during Clinton’s last campaign meeting... the elections went on until the late hours in Turkish time. Hillary was in the lead as our newspaper went to press. Surveys show Clinton winning by 44 percent."

It recalls the famous occasion when US newspapers declared Republican John Dewey the winner of the 1948 election. It was actually won by Harry Truman, the Democratic incumbent.


Kuwait congratulate Trump on win despite saying they 'never paid' for Gulf War

Kuwait Emir Sheikh al-Sabah sent his congratulations to Trump and “expressed hopes that Kuwait and the US will continue their strong historic relations, working together for a brighter future for the world.”

Before winning the presidency, Trump controversially said last April that Kuwait never paid the US back for expelling Saddam Hussein’s forces from their country in 1991.

"If you look at these nations, they wouldn't be there except for us,” he said referring the wealthy Gulf states. “You take a look at Kuwait. I mean, we handed Kuwait back to the people that right now essentially own Kuwait, because it's really ownership more than anything else. We handed it back. They never paid us."

Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah attends the 136th Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit held in Riyadh, on 10 December, 2015 (AFP)

Knesset MP: Trump victory bad news for all

Israeli parliament member Jamal Zahalka delivers a speech during a press conference in Tel Aviv on 11 Februrary 2015

Commenting on Donald Trump's victory, Knesset MP Jamal Zahalka, representing the Balad Party on the Joint List, told MEE:

"Trump's victory is bad news for all opponents of racism and supporters of democracy, human rights and social justice.

"It is enough to see the happiness of Netanyahu and those around him with Trump's victory. This is the clearest evidence of Trump's political leanings and his allegiance to the camp of extremism that is opposed to human rights and the rights of the people," he added

"The far-right camp, and the dominance of the logic of strength and the demagogic populism of the power of money - which seems to be a local phenomenon from one country to another - has today become a global tyrannical force. The victory of Trump as president of the United States solidifies this camp and the position of Putin in Russia and Netanyahu in Israel as well as the opportunity of Jean-Marie le Pen [winning] in France," said Zahalka.

"With regards to the Palestinian cause we hope that Trump's victory will be a catalyst for a change in the Palestinian resistance strategies whereby there is an end to waiting for American relief. Trump's words, and those around him, are very clear because he is not just with Israel but specifically with all audacity and arrogance with the Israeli far-right, represented by Netanyahu, Trump's friend and twin.”

The face of defeat

Supporters of Hillary Clinton see the election results coming as their candidate lost out to Donald Trump overnight (Reuters)

Saudi king hopes Trump brings 'stability' to Middle East

Saudi King Salman expressed hope on Wednesday that US president-elect Donald Trump would bring stability to the Middle East.

"We wish your excellency success in your mission to achieve security and stability in the Middle East and worldwide," Salman said in a message of congratulations reported by the official Saudi Press Agency.

He praised the relations which are "historic and tight between the two friendly countries, that all parties aspire to develop and reinforce".

The United States and Saudi Arabia have a decades-old relationship based on the exchange of American security for Saudi oil.

But ties between Riyadh and Washington became increasingly frayed during the eight-year Democratic administration of President Barack Obama.

Saudi leaders felt Obama was reluctant to get involved in the civil war in Syria and other regional conflicts.

They also worried that he was tilting towards their regional rival, Shia Iran, which is on the opposing side to Sunni-dominated Saudi Arabia in the wars in Syria and Yemen.

Washington and other major powers reached an agreement, which took effect in January, to lift international sanctions on Iran in exchange for guarantees that it would not pursue a nuclear weapons capability.

France's Hollande: Trump win 'opens period of uncertainty'

French President Francois Hollande said that Donald Trump's stunning victory in US presidential elections "opens a period of uncertainty."

In a televised address, he also said that "this context calls for a united Europe, capable of making itself heard and of promoting policies wherever its interests or its values are challenged."

Egypt's Sisi offers congratulations to Trump on victory

Trump and Sisi during a meeting at the United Nations earlier this year (AFP)

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi was the first leader from the Arab world to congratulate Donald Trump on Wednesday and said he hoped the US president-elect would "pump new life" into Egyptian-American relations.

A statement from the Egyptian presidency emphasised the “special, strategic relationship” between Egypt and the United States that it said had lasted for decades.

“The Arab Republic of Egypt is looking to see Donald Trump’s presidency pump new life into the course of Egyptian-American relations, and more cooperation and coordination that will benefit both the Egyptian and American peoples, and promote peace and stability and development in the Middle East region, especially in the face of the huge challenges that it faces,” the statement read.

Read more

Trump victory means Palestinian state 'is dead' says Israeli minister

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett says 'Palestinian state is dead' following Trump victory

Israel's right-wing education minister and leader of the Jewish Home party Naftali Bennett congratulated Donald Trump on his win and said that "the era of a Palestinian state is over," CNN reports.

In a statement, Bennett said: “We thank Hillary Clinton for her friendship with Israel. We are sure the special relationship between the United States and Israel will continue, and even grow stronger. Trump's victory is an opportunity for Israel to immediately retract the notion of a Palestinian state in the centre of the country, which would hurt our security and just cause. This is the position of the president-elect, as written in his platform, and it should be our policy, plain and simple. The era of a Palestinian state is over."

Iran's Zarif urges Trump to stick to nuclear deal

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has urged Donald Trump to stick to the terms of the 2015 nuclear deal which saw sanctions against the country lifted.

READ MORE: Iran's Zarif urges Trump to stick to nuclear deal

Trump had vowed to tear up the deal if elected during his campaign, prompting Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to say that he would happily burn the agreement if Trump did so.

But some in Tehran said they were hopeful that Trump as president would act differently to Trump the candidate, with some analysts suggesting that Tehran actually favoured him because they believed he would be easier to deal with than Clinton.

Writing for Middle East Eye, analyst Mahan Abedin said: "In reality, the current geopolitical dynamics make the staunchly nationalist and isolationist Donald Trump the clear choice for Iranian leaders.

"At an ideological level, the Islamic Republic has no issues with a nationalist USA enjoying its own culture. Instead, it is America’s overbearing foreign policy and specifically its over-reach and shameless double standards in the Middle East, which inform Iranian anti-Americanism."

Netanyahu spotted the anti-elite wave first, MEE's Melman writes

Yossi Melman, Middle East Eye columnist, says that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is a "wizard" who was the first to spot the anti-establishment revolt that has now swept Donald Trump to power.

Surge in traffic to Canadian immigration website: Report

Canada's immigration website is reported to have crashed because of a surge in people looking to emigrate from the US, the Independent website reports.

Canada also appeared to be reacting to Trump's victory in a tweet posted early on Wednesday on the country's official Twitter feed which said that immigrants to Canada were welcome to "bring their cultural traditions with them":


How the US media is reacting to Trump's triumph

This is how the front of the New York Times website looks right now...

And CNN...

Fox News...

And this is the Wednesday's New York Post front page...

Muslim Americans for Trump celebrate success

Sajid Tarar, the founder of Muslim Americans for Trump, has told the BBC that Trump's victory is a defeat for the "crooked system" of American politics.

"This was against the system, the crooked system and I am glad it has been defeated today," said Tarar.

Asked how Trump could unite the nation after a bitter and divisive campaign, Tarar said: "He is going to make the cities safe, he is going to bring jobs back. Society is going to heal itself automatically."

Turkish Prime Minister calls on Trump to extradite Gulen

Turkish Prime Minister Benali Yildirim has congratulated Donald Trump on his victory and used the opportunity to call once again for Washington to extradite Fetullah Gulen, the exiled cleric who Ankara accuses of orchestrating the 15 July failed coup.

"An opportunity has been created for the new president to take our traditional friendly relations even further forward by taking into consideration Turkey’s sensitivities in its fight against terror and by prioritising regional peace and stability," said Yildirim.

Middle East Eye's Suraj Sharma reports from Istanbul on how officials in pro-government circles in Ankara have been willing a Trump victory for months.

Hillary Clinton concedes to Donald Trump in stunning upset

US networks have said that Hillary Clinton called Trump to concede the race, according to sources. More to follow...

Saudi cleric says US 'cannot come to grips being governed by a woman'

As the international reaction to Trump's near victory continues, a Saudi cleric on Twitter who has almost 50,000 followers stoked flames online by saying, "The Americans cannot come to grips to being governed by a woman, it is not in their culture, so she will not govern"



Republicans maintain majority in Senate: Networks

Republicans have officially won a 51-seat majority in the Senate, according to NBC.

Number of seats of each party (NBC)

Clinton campaign chairman cancels rally, does not concede

At the Clinton rally in New York early on Wednesday morning, Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta told Clinton supporters to go home and that each vote is being counted. He did not concede the election.

“We’ll have more to say tomorrow,” Podesta said. “Your voices and your enthusiasm mean so much to her and to Tim and to all of us. We are so proud of you, and we are so proud of her,” he added..

“She has done an amazing job, and she is not done yet.” Let’s get those votes counted, and let’s get this done,” he concluded.

The reaction of sending Podesta has been met with swift criticism on Twitter.



Trump wins Pennsylvania: NYT

According to the New York Times, "Donald Trump has won Pennsylvania, all but assuring that he will be the next president of the United States"

Politicians around the world react to Trump's near victory

As Trump inches closer to clinching the presidency, leaders from around the world have reacted in shock and support.

A senior member of German Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrat Party said "we no idea what Trump would do as president," adding that his presidency would create an uncertain geopolitical situation, according Reuters.

And French far-right politician Marine Le Pen congratulated Trump. She has endorsed the billionaire businessman.

South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se said on Wednesday that he believed Donald Trump would maintain the current US policy of pressuring North Korea over its nuclear and missile tests, if he wins the presidential election.

"Candidate Trump has expressed his clear position by saying after North Korea's nuclear test that such provocation by the North is a direct threat to the United States," Yun said.