'They go out of their way to cover me inaccurately': Trump hits media on World Press Freedom Day
By CHRISTAL HAYES | USA Today | Published: May 4, 2019
WASHINGTON (Tribune News Service) — President Donald Trump knocked the media on Friday after being asked about World Press Freedom Day and how he could mend relations between his administration and the Fourth Estate.
Speaking from the Oval Office with Slovak Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini, Trump talked Slovakia, an hour-long phone call he'd had with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the media.
Asked about Friday being World Press Freedom Day, the president said, "I think I have a very good relationship with some of the press."
"Unfortunately," Trump added, "some of the press does not cover me accurately and in fact, they go out of their way to cover me inaccurately, so I don't think that's a free press. I think that's a dishonest press."
He applauded the New York Times, which like other news organizations, he typically attacks as "fake news" and an "enemy of the people," for a story about the FBI and an undercover investigator that met with one of his campaign aides during the 2016 White House race.
In light of World Press Freedom Day, journalists across the globe honored colleagues who have died doing their jobs or been jailed because of their work.
Many highlighted the work of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, who was killed by a team of Saudi operatives last fall, and Reuters reporters Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, who were imprisoned in Myanmar following an investigation into the killing of 10 Rohingya Muslim men and boys in a village in Rakhine state.
Last year, 54 journalists were killed across the globe, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. That number includes the reporters killed in June at the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Md. Five employees of the paper were shot and killed, including four journalists and a sales assistant.
The Committee also notes that as of December, more than 250 journalists remained imprisoned around the world.
Trump, while talking with reporters Friday, also discussed his phone call with Putin, explaining the two leaders discussing the ongoing situation in Venezuela and the results of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the Trump campaign and Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Trump said that Putin called the investigation "a mountain" that "ended up being a mouse."
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