Trump reiterates call for Muslim ban in first ad

Republican presidential frontrunner unveils his first television ad of the presidential campaign, and once again fuels some controversy.

Ben Ariel ,

Trump's first TV ad
Trump's first TV ad

Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump on Monday unveiled his first television ad of the presidential election campaign, in which he reiterated his call for a temporary ban on Muslim entry to the United States over security concerns.

The video also sparked fresh controversy, AFP reported, by incorporating footage of migrants fleeing Morocco into a Spanish enclave.

The 30-second ad will be broadcast in Iowa and New Hampshire starting Tuesday, costing $2 million a week ahead of the state's first-in-the-nation voting contests, Trump’s campaign said.

The commercial spotlights his call for a ban on Muslims entering the United States, pledge to crush the Islamic State (ISIS) extremist group and promise to end illegal immigration from Mexico.

"The politicians can pretend it's something else but Donald Trump calls it radical Islamic terrorism -- that's why he's calling for a temporary shutdown of Muslims entering the United States," says the voiceover.

"He'll quickly cut off the head of ISIS and take their oil," ads the male speaker.

"And he'll stop illegal immigration by building a wall on our southern border that Mexico will pay for," he says, over footage that shows dozens of migrants streaming across a border.

Trump’s recent call for a temporary ban on Muslim entry over security concerns caused an uproar both at home and abroad.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said the proposal was "disqualifying", and Secretary of State John Kerry claiming the comments “endanger national security”.

The Somali terrorist group Al-Shabaab even used Trump’s remarks in a recruitment video, which the billionaire dismissed on Sunday, saying, They use other people, too."

But the remarks on Muslims were not the only thing to cause controversy in Trump’s ad. A fact-checking website gave the ad a "Pants on Fire" rating, saying the footage comes not from the Mexico-United States border, but rather from Melilla, a small Spanish enclave thousands of miles across the Atlantic Ocean on Morocco's coast.

The website, PolitiFact, said it traced the footage to an Italian broadcast from May 2014 of people crossing the border from Morocco into Melilla and said RepubblicaTV attributed the video to the Spanish interior ministry.

Trump's campaign said, according to AFP, the footage was "intentional and selected to demonstrate the severe impact of an open border" and the "very real threat" to America by not building a wall on the Mexican border.

"The biased mainstream media doesn't understand, but Americans who want to protect their jobs and their families do," it said.

"I am very proud of this ad. I don't know if I need it, but I don't want to take any chances," Trump was quoted as having said Monday.