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Obama Just Spoke Out Against Trump's Travel Ban

"The President fundamentally disagrees with the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion," Obama said in a statement.

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Barack Obama issued a statement on Donald Trump's controversial travel ban Monday, saying he supported the protesters and that he "fundamentally disagrees with the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion."

Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

This is the first time Obama has weighed in on Trump's presidency since he left office earlier this month.

During his final press conference as president, Obama had said that he would not stay silent if Trump instituted policies of “systematic discrimination” where the country’s “core values may be at stake.”

Here's the statement from Obama's spokesperson Kevin Lewis:

President Obama is heartened by the level of engagement taking place in communities around the country. In his final official speech as President, he spoke about the important role of citizen and how all Americans have a responsibility to be the guardians of our democracy — not just during an election but every day.

Citizens exercising their Constitutional rights to assemble, organize and have their voices heard by their elected officials is exactly what we expect to see when American values are at stake.

With regard to comparisons to President Obama's foreign policy decisions, as we've heard before, the President fundamentally disagrees with the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion.

Obama had opposed calls for a Muslim ban in 2015, calling it "shameful" and "not American."

"When I hear folks say that, well, maybe we should just admit the Christians but not the Muslims; when I hear political leaders suggesting that there would be a religious test for which a person who’s fleeing from a war-torn country is admitted, when some of those folks themselves come from families who benefited from protection when they were fleeing political persecution — that’s shameful," Obama said in November 2015. "That’s not American. That’s not who we are. We don’t have religious tests to our compassion."

Tasneem Nashrulla is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Tasneem Nashrulla at tasneem.nashrulla@buzzfeed.com.

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