Published: Tue, February 12, 2019

Trump supporter allegedly attacks cameraman at El Paso rally

Trump supporter allegedly attacks cameraman at El Paso rally

President Trump often complains about what he sees as unfair media coverage, and at Monday's rally directed attention to the press covering the event that led to the predictable boos and chants of "CNN sucks!"

Washington correspondent Gary O'Donoghue, who is blind, said his cameraman Ron Skeans was filming the rally in El Paso.

"Fortunately, our cameraman is fine, he is made of stern stuff", Mr O'Donoghue told the BBC Radio 4 Today Programme on Tuesday morning.

The footage captured from Skeans' camera shows the shot focused on Trump before jolting away as he is pushed by a man.

He is being restrained by a man in a black t-shirt - also wearing a red hat - as he shouts "f*** the media, f*** the media".

Mr Skeans said the "very hard shove" came from his blindside.

A Trump campaign official later suggested the assailant was drunk, and Trump reportedly gave Skeans a thumbs-up signal, and then continued his speech after the cameraman returned the gesture.

"This is a constant feature of these rallies - a goading of the crowds against the media", Mr O'Donoghue said, who added that he had been "spat at before". "The man was removed by security and Ron is fine", the statement read.

'It is clearly unacceptable for any of our staff to be attacked for doing their job'.

Last August UN experts warned Mr Trump's attacks "increase the risk of journalists being targeted with violence", calling his rhetoric "strategic". People regularly scream at the reporters who cover the events.

Trump had used his rally to encourage support for his proposed border wall with Mexico, which he claims will protect the U.S. from violent criminals, drugs and a "tremendous onslaught" of migrant caravans.

"The arena holds 8,000 and thank you fire department, they got in about 10 (thousand)", he said.

According to reports, a spokesman for El Paso fire department said the president's claim was incorrect, and that only 6,500 people were allowed inside - the building's capacity.

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