NPR reporter removed from Mike Pompeo trip after testy interview

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Jan 28, 2020, 12:55 PM(IST)

Fie photo of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

Pompeo was interviewed on Friday by NPR reporter Mary Louise Kelly, and was asked repeatedly about Ukraine. 

The US State Department has removed a National Public Radio (NPR) reporter from the press pool for Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's upcoming foreign trip, a press association and NPR said on Monday.

The development comes days after Pompeo's tense interview with NPR journalist.

The removal of NPR reporter Michele Kelemen, who was part of the travelling pool of correspondents with Pompeo on his planned trip to the UK, Ukraine, Belarus and Central Asia, can be seen only as retaliation for her colleague's interview, the State Department Correspondents' Association (SDCA) said.

"The State Department press corps has a long tradition of accompanying secretaries of state on their travels and we find it unacceptable to punish an individual member of our association," Shaun Tandon, the head of the association, said in a statement.

Pompeo was interviewed on Friday by NPR reporter Mary Louise Kelly, and was asked repeatedly about Ukraine and ousted US Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch during a testy nine-minute exchange.

Yovanovitch's removal was a key event in the actions that prompted the impeachment of President Donald Trump by the Democratic-led US House of Representatives last month.

Following the interview, Kelly said Pompeo cursed at her and repeatedly "used the F-word" and asked her: "Do you think Americans care about Ukraine?"

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