President Trump’s nominee to lead the United Nations’ migration agency has in recent years expressed controversial views about Muslims in social media posts.
Ken Isaacs, nominated to be director general of the U.N International Organization for Migration, has called Muslims violent and said policymakers should favor Christian refugees, the Washington Post reported.
Isaacs, after a June terrorist attack in London, commented on a CNN International story that quoted a Catholic bishop saying, “This isn’t in the name of God, this isn’t what the Muslim faith asks people to do.”
Isaacs responded: “CNN, Bishop if you read the Quran you will know ‘this’ is exactly what the Muslim faith instructs the faithful to do.”
In 2015, Isaacs visited a Syrian refugee camp in Greece as part of his current job as a vice president of the Christian relief organization Samaritan’s Purse.
Isaacs, in a Facebook post timed to the visit, criticized former President Obama for wanting to admit to the U.S. large numbers of Syrian refugees as a “foolish and delusional” attempt to “show cultural enlightenment.”
In another social media post that year, Isaacs said Christians should receive preferential treatment as refugees.
“Refugees are 2 grps,” he said, using shorthand for “groups.” “Some may go back and some can’t return. Christians can never return. They must be 1st priority.”
Isaacs wrote in another tweet: “If Islam is a religion of peace, let’s see 2 million Muslims in National Mall marching against jihad & stand for America! I haven’t seen it!”
The White House announced Isaacs' nomination on Thursday.
He previously served in the George W. Bush administration as the U.S. Agency for International Development’s director of foreign disaster assistance.
The U.N. migration agency he would be tasked to lead is a 169-member organization that coordinates billions of dollars in assistance to migrants around the world.
Isaacs’ nomination will be considered by the group’s voting members. No nominee has been voted down for the position since the late 1960s.
The State Department issued a statement on Isaacs' behalf apologizing after the Post flagged his controversial comments.
“I deeply regret that my comments on social media have caused hurt and have undermined my professional record,” his statement read. “It was careless and it has caused concern among those who have expressed faith in my ability to effectively lead IOM. I pledge to hold myself to the highest standards of humanity, human dignity and equality if chosen to lead IOM.”