Nigel Farage has sparked an angry backlash after attacking the "screaming" media for criticism of a US policy separating young children from their parents.
The former Ukip leader was accused of condoning state child abuse after backing the controversial policy of Donald Trump.
His comments came just hours before the US President backed down amid international fury over the separation of children from their parents while they are prosecuted for crossing the US border illegally.
More than 2,300 children, including babies and toddlers, were separated from parents under the policy between May 5 and June 9.
But, appearing on Fox News, Mr Farage defended the policy saying: "It's very easy to be compassionate but you've got to understand in the case of America and these borders, many of these children are actually being used as a means to get other people in, many of who aren't even their families.
"Trump has got to stay tough on this and ignore all of the screams coming from the liberal media."
Following his remarks, Mr Farage was branded "inhumane and insensitive" online, the Harry Potter author JK Rowling among those who criticised him.
Actually Nigel most Americans are horrified by the scenes of toddlers being put in concentration camps. Most good people are. You may want to do some soul searching— William O'Malley (@OMalleyWilliam) June 20, 2018
Rowling wrote: "The screams reverberating around the world are coming from terrified children in cages. What you’re saying here is that you believe child abuse should be a legitimate tool of the state."
No Nigel, it is absolutely not ok to take children away from their parents. If Trump wants to be tough, he needs to think of another way. Shame on you for encouraging this— Edel McVeigh (@edelclose) June 20, 2018
What an unpleasant individual you continue to be. Do you truly believe this nonsense or are you just trying to milk the media for every penny you can before people wise up to the repugnant views you hold?— Rhys Davies (@RhysDavies10) June 20, 2018
There was a public outcry in the US over the "zero tolerance" immigration policy. Under the policy, children are held separately from their parents who are being prosecuted for illegally crossing the border.
Following the outcry, Mr Trump signed an executive order to keep families together at the US southern border.
While signing the executive order at the White House, he said he did not like the sight of children being separated from their families.
However an official has claimed that the executive order will not ensure that those already apart will be reunited.
Earlier, Mr Trump stressed that the country will "still have to maintain toughness or our country will be overrun by people, by crime"