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White House reporters condemn attack on BBC cameraman at Trump rally

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 2/12/2019 Melissa Quinn
Donald Trump standing in front of a crowd © Provided by MediaDC: Washington Newspaper Publishing Company, Inc.

The White House Correspondents’ Association is calling on President Trump to “make absolutely clear to his supporters” that violence against members of the media is “unacceptable” after a BBC cameraman was attacked during the president’s rally Monday night.

“The White House Correspondents’ Association condemns the physical attack on our colleague at the president’s rally in El Paso, Texas,” White House Correspondents’ Association President Olivier Knox said in a statement. “We are relieved that, this time, no one was seriously hurt. The president of the United States should make absolutely clear to his supporters that violence against reporters is unacceptable.”

The BBC said Tuesday that the cameraman, Ron Skeans, was “violently pushed and shoved” by a man wearing a red “Make America Great Again” hat during the president’s rally.

Video circulated on social media shows the man yelling and cursing at reporters as he was restrained and escorted out of the event.

Skeans described the interaction with the Trump supporter as a “very hard shove.”

In its statement, the BBC said it “is clearly unacceptable for any of our staff to be attacked for doing their job.” Trump checked “that all was OK,” the broadcaster said.

The president frequently rails against the press, referring to reporters as “the enemy of the people” and the media in general as “fake news.”

Trump has been criticized for his rhetoric about the press, including by press freedom groups that warn the president’s comments have increased the risk for journalists to be targeted.

[Also read: 2020 Democrat blames Trump for ‘encouraging violence’ against reporters at rallies]

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