Trump denounces KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists as ‘thugs’

World Today

Trump President Donald Trump speaks in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House in Washington, Monday, Aug. 14, 2017. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump stated that “racism is evil” and condemned the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists as “criminals and thugs.”

Trump spoke from the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House after meeting with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and FBI director Christopher Wray about the race-fueled violence Saturday in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Trump came under fire for his comments Saturday that “many sides” are to blame for the violence. In those remarks, he did not single out white supremacists or any other hate group, even as Republican lawmakers and others in his White House did condemn them by name.

Trump also expressed condolences for the death of Heather Heyer, who was killed by a car that drove into a crowd of protesters in Charlottesville Saturday. Nineteen others were injured in that attack.

Earlier Monday, the alleged driver of the car, James Alex Fields Jr., 20, was ordered to be held without bond. He is charged with second-degree murder, among other counts.

In his remarks, Trump also mourned the deaths of two state troopers Lt. H. Jay Cullen and Berke M.M. Bates died when their helicopter crashed.

Story includes reporting by The Associated Press