Somalia's Al-Shabaab militant group uses video footage of Donald Trump in recruitment film

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump at a rally in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump at a rally in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.PHOTO: REUTERS

RIYADH (Reuters) - Somalia's Islamist militant group Al-Shabaab, which is linked to Al-Qaeda, has released a recruitment film in the form of a documentary about racial injustice in the United States featuring Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, the SITE monitoring service reported on Saturday (Jan 2).

Mr Trump, the billionaire developer, former reality TV star and Republican frontrunner, was shown in the 51-minute film making his December call for the United States to bar all Muslims from the country as his supporters cheered.

It was shown between two clips of militant leader Anwar al-Awlaki, killed in a drone strike in Yemen in 2011, saying Muslims in the United States would face a choice between leaving for Islamic countries or staying at home to fight the West.

The film was distributed on Twitter on Friday by the al-Kataib Media Foundation, an Islamist militant organisation, SITE reported.

Mr Trump's call to ban Muslims from entering the United States has been widely condemned by American politicians. It has also provoked an international uproar and led to criticism that his views could be used as propaganda by Islamist militants.

Al-Shabaab, which seeks to overthrow Somalia's Western-backed government and impose a strict version of syariah law, has links to the international militant group Al-Qaeda and has carried out attacks in Kenya and Ethiopia.