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Multiple major news outlets denied entry of White House press briefing
A host of major U.S. news outlets were barred from participating in a White House press gaggle Friday, underscoring the escalating tension between U.S. President Donald Trump and the media.
Cable News Network, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and Politico were excluded from a off-camera press gaggle, an informal press briefing, given by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer.
Other press that were blocked included British Broadcasting Company, Buzzfeed, the Hill, the Huffington Post, Daily Mail, New York Daily News and most of the foreign press, according to a report from Axios.
The White House press office said in an email that "the pool was there, so various media mediums were represented."
The White House Correspondent's Associated lashed at the decision, saying in a statement that it is "protesting strongly against how today's gaggle is being handled by the White House."
The Associated Press and Time magazine boycotted the gaggle in response to the incident.
The move was considered very rare and many senior White House correspondents don't recall something similar has had happened before.
Earlier in the day, Trump chastised U.S. mainstream media for inaccurately reporting on his administration, saying during a speech at the Conservative Policial Action Convention.
"Many of these groups are part the large media corporations that have their own agenda and it's not your agenda and it's not the country's agenda, it's their own agenda...as you saw throughout the entire campaign, and even now, the fake news doesn't tell the truth," he said.
Trump has previously named five U.S. media outlets, including CNN and New York Times, as "enemy of the American people."
The bumpy relationship between Trump and the media sank to a new low this week after several news media reported that the White House had asked the Federal Bureau of Investigation to knock down reports about communications between the Trump campaign and Russia during the election.
Spicer told members of the press in a early morning briefing Friday that the reports were "indefensible and inaccurate."
[Source: Xinhua, Washington, 24Feb17]
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