Aug 3, 2018

UN says Trump's attacks on media violate press freedom, human rights

Photo: Rick Loomis/Getty Images

The United Nations Human Rights Office has announced its condemnation of President Trump's ongoing derogatory remarks toward the press with experts saying the attacks "run counter to the country’s obligations to respect press freedom and international human rights law."

Timing: The announcement came the same day Ivanka Trump broke with her father at an Axios event explaining she does not believe the media is the "enemy of the people," and White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders refused to stand up for the press at Thursday's briefing.

Why it matters: Trump has repeatedly gone after the "fake news media," calling the press "the enemy of the people," "very dishonest" or "fake news," and accusing them of "distorting democracy," "conspiracy theories and blind hatred," as the UN points out.

"His attacks are strategic, designed to undermine confidence in reporting and raise doubts about verifiable facts."
— David Kaye and Edison Lanza, the Special Rapporteurs on freedom of expression for the United Nations and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

Trump sought to explain away his daughter's remark, tweeting, "They asked my daughter Ivanka whether or not the media is the enemy of the people. She correctly said no. It is the FAKE NEWS, which is a large percentage of the media, that is the enemy of the people!"

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 883,225 — Total deaths: 44,156 — Total recoveries: 185,377Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 189,753 — Total deaths: 4,090 — Total recoveries: 7,141Map.
  3. Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index: It's "a tale of two Americas" as the rich are more likely to work from home and the poor are more likely to report to work.
  4. Federal government latest: President Trump said the next two weeks would be "very painful," with projections indicating the virus could kill 100,000–240,000 Americans.
  5. State updates: Washington and California appear to have slowed their surges of new cases — Florida cases have been doubling the past four days, approaching 7,000.
  6. NYPD: Over 1,400 of its employees have reportedly tested positive for COVID-19.
  7. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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