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Press grill State Dept. over Conservative website travelling with Tillerson

Thursday, March 16, 2017 - 01:35

U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner is grilled by reporters as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson flies to Asia accompanied by only one journalist on his aircraft, a reporter from a website founded by former Republican political operatives, in a departure from decades of practice.

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U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson flew to Asia accompanied by only one journalist on his aircraft, a reporter from a website founded by former Republican political operatives, in a departure from decades of practice. Tillerson, who became the top U.S. diplomat under Republican President Donald Trump in February, traveled to Mexico and Germany last month with a small contingent of journalists, including a "pool" reporter who informed colleagues of Tillerson's statements or actions. The journalist on Tillerson's plane that arrived in Tokyo on Wednesday (March 15), Erin McPike of the Independent Journal Review (IJR), was not acting as a pool reporter. State Department Acting Spokesman Mark Toner said in a statement that there was only one seat available on Tillerson's plane for media. The department had previously told reporters covering Tillerson's trip to South Korea, Japan, and China that he would not be taking reporters on his plane and that they would have to fly commercially, breaking with decades of precedent stretching back to Henry Kissinger.

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Press grill State Dept. over Conservative website travelling with Tillerson

Thursday, March 16, 2017 - 01:35