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Media 'working overtime to blame me' for New Zealand mosque attacks: Trump

File photo of US President Donald Trump. Photograph:( Reuters )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Mar 19, 2019, 09.00 AM (IST)

US President Donald Trump has said the media is "working overtime to blame me" for the New Zealand mosque attacks. 

The attacks on the two mosques last Friday in Christchurch have left 50 people dead. 

Brenton Tarrant, a 28-year-old Australian, had walked up to the first mosque and started shooting with automatic rifles. He then drove away, walked up to a second mosque and started shooting again. 

The youngest of his victims was three years old. 

In his 73-page manifesto released just before he live-streamed his attack, Tarrant wrote that he supported Trump "as a symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose" but not as a "policymaker and leader." 

His manifesto meanwhile expressed extreme anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim views. 

While Trump has condemned the attacks on the mosques, he has not condemned white nationalism. 

"I don`t really think so. I think it`s a small group of people that have very, very serious problems," Trump said when he was asked whether he thought there had been a rise of white nationalism. 

"The Fake News Media is working overtime to blame me for the horrible attack in New Zealand. They will have to work very hard to prove that one. So Ridiculous!" Trump tweeted on Monday. 

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The White House has since rejected claims that Trump backs white nationalist views. 

"The president is not a white supremacist. I`m not sure how many times we have to say that," acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said on "Fox News Sunday". 

(With inputs from ANI)

Story highlights

'The Fake News Media is working overtime to blame me for the horrible attack in New Zealand. They will have to work very hard to prove that one. So Ridiculous!' Trump tweeted.