Marco Rubio Suggests Trump's Muslim Ban Would Not Prevent Orlando-Style Massacres

Marco Rubio
U.S. Senator Marco Rubio in Tegucigalpa, Honduras on June 1, 2016. Jorge Cabrera/Reuters

Donald Trump's proposed ban on Muslim immigration would not prevent massacres like the one in Orlando, Florida Senator and former presidential candidate Marco Rubio has suggested.

Omar Mateen, the 29-year-old suspect, is a U.S.-born Muslim and the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) has claimed responsibility for the attack.

But asked about the proposal to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the country put forward by Trump, his old rival and the Republican Party's prospective Presidential nominee, in an interview on Monday, Rubio suggested it would not help prevent such attacks.

"[The suspect] was born in the United States, he was raised in this country. He lived among us, he worked jobs here, this is a person who benefitted from all the freedoms and the prosperity of this great country and despite all that was radicalized and took the life of 50 of his fellow Americans," Rubio said.

"We have to work with the Islamic community across the world to reject this ideology as illegitimate," he added.

Speaking on BBC Radio's Today programme, Rubio also said the attack, which killed at least 50 people, was "a horrible tragedy," but restricting access to firearms "wouldn't have prevented this attack."

"You saw in Europe and the Paris attacks where these guns are illegal and they still were able to get them. [The attacker] could have bought them from the black market."

"These terrorists are committed I think we should focus less on the weapon they used and more on the motivation behind it, which is a radical interpretation of their faith."