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Liberty University and Niall Carson/PA Wire
World News

Christian educator backs Trump on Charlottesville

Jerry Falwell Jr from Liberty University in Virginia congratulated the United States president on his "bold" and "truthful" reaction to violence which gripped the city of Charlottesville in the state on Saturday.

Writing on Twitter, he said: "Finally a leader in the White House. Jobs returning, North Korea backing down, bold truthful statement about Charlottesville tragedy. So proud of Donald Trump."

AP Photo/Steve Helber

White supremacists gathered in Charlottesville on Saturday to protest what they saw as an "anti-white" attitude in the US, and to oppose the removal of a statue remembering a Confederate general.

A woman, 32 year old Heather Heyer, was killed when a car ploughed into counter-demonstrators in the city. Hundreds of people attended a candlelit vigil in her memory at the University of Viriginia on Wednesday night.

Donald Trump came in for heavy criticism when he used a heated press conference on Tuesday night to say the counter-protesters were just as much at fault as the white nationalists who opposed them.

His remarks displeased members of his own party, business leaders and advisors who wanted him to specifically condemn Klu Klux Klan members and neo-Nazis who were involved in the Charlottesville rally.

Twitter user, Jana Manning wrote: "As a black student at LU, I'm curious, how do you support Trump's statements on CVille but praise on how diverse liberty university is??"

Another, Wendy Alsup, said: "Really harmful thing to say for a Christian who in theory believes the Bible. White supremacy incompatible w/ Scripture starting in Gen 1."

AP Photo/Steve Helber

The son of a church leader, Jerry Falwell Jr became president of Liberty University in May 2007. He has been a long-term supporter of Mr Trump.

A statement on the institution's website says: "His goal for the university is to fulfill the original vision to provide a world class educational experience that will Train Champions for Christ who are fully equipped for successful careers in every profession."

Founded in 1971, Liberty University is the country's largest private, non-profit university in US, boasting 110,000 enrolled students.

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