Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., who attended the Oval Office meeting Thursday, and peopled briefed on the conversation said Trump did make the comments as reported: He questioned why the US would accept more immigrants from Haiti and "shithole countries" in Africa as he rejected a bipartisan immigration deal.
The Rev. Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Dallas and a frequent guest at the White House, said that apart from the president's choice of words, "Trump is right on target in his policy", putting the needs of the USA above those of other countries. Trump allegedly said after being presented with a proposal to restore protections for immigrants from the countries in question.
The Post, which cited people briefed on the meeting, quoted Trump as asking why the United States attracted immigrants from "shithole countries" such as African nations, Haiti or El Salvador, rather than - for instance - wealthy and overwhelmingly white Norway.
Breaking with longstanding tradition against diagnosing public figures, some psychiatrists have said it is their duty to warn against the President's erratic behaviour.
President Trump's remarks about African countries and Haiti drew condemnation from a group of African ambassadors to the United Nations who called them "outrageous, racist and xenophobic" and demanded a retraction and apology.
El Salvador's foreign minister said a formal protest had been made over the comments attributed to Trump.
Where someone is born will never determine whether they deserve dignity. I have a wonderful relationship with Haitians.
As outrage spread, the US government's own Africa Media Hub tried to put out the flames.
The Republican president's comments were decried as racist by African and Haitian politicians, by the United Nations human rights office and by U.S. lawmakers from both major parties.
"You can not dismiss entire countries and continents as "shitholes" whose entire populations, who are not white, are therefore not welcome", Rupert Colville, spokesman for the United Nations human rights office, told reporters in Geneva.
Trump issues ultimatum to fix Iran nuclear deal
The foreign ministry vowed to retaliate but did not say what form any action might take. Iranian officials have said they are not interested in any renegotiation.
Senegal's President Macky Sall said he was shocked and that "Africa and the black race merit the respect and consideration of all".
Graham spoke up, confronting Trump's harsh language, which Durbin said "took extraordinary political courage". He said there were "very fine people on both sides" after violence at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, left one counter-protester dead.
In exchange, the deal would end extended family "chain migration".
Democrats had long vowed they wouldn't fund the wall but are accepting the opening request as part of a broader plan that protects from deportation about 800,000 "Dreamers".
Trump was widely derided past year after twice referring to Namibia as "Nambia". He gave Congress until March to come up with a legislative solution.
Their future, he insisted, "should not be used as a bargaining chip to negotiate the most severe and restrictive immigration and security measures possible". The young people are human beings, not commodities, he said.
Much of Trump's first year as president has been marked by racial controversy.
This was the white nationalist vision of America.
Ghana's former president John Dramani Mahama, whom Akufo-Addo defeated in elections just a month after Trump's own win at the polls, on Twitter asked: "Isn't Trump demonstrating that he's nothing but a racist and pursuing a policy of "Make America White Again"?"
Speaking to Xinhua, Abebe Ayente, senior researcher at Ethiopian Foreign Relations Strategic Studies (EFRSS), a local think tank, said the comments will further reduce the influence of USA on the global stage.