White House takes heat for "under-reported" terror claims

A 78-item list includes many extensively covered events - including attacks in Paris, Orlando and Berlin

White House takes heat for "under-reported" terror claims

Picture by Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP/Press Association Images

Journalists in the US have criticised the White House for distributing a list of terrorist attacks the Trump administration believes were 'under-reported".

The 78-item list includes many attacks and incidents that were extensively reported on - including the Paris attacks in November 2015, the Florida nightclub shooting in June 2016, and the Berlin truck attack late last year.

The list predominantly focuses on attacks and attempted attacks by Islamist extremists with suspected links to Islamic State. The incidents range from raids & thwarted attacks to widely-known attacks that left dozens dead.

The release of the document followed remarks by President Trump at a gathering of military personnel yesterday.

He told the crowd in Tampa, Florida: "ISIS is on a campaign of genocide, committing atrocities across the world. Radical Islamic terrorists are determined to strike our homeland as they did on 9/11; as they did from Boston to Orlando, to San Bernardino. And all across Europe, you've seen what happened in Paris and Nice.  

"All over Europe it's happening. It's gotten to a point where it's not even being reported and, in many cases, the very, very dishonest press doesn't want to report it. They have their reasons and you understand that."

The White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer later told reporters: "[President Trump] felt as though members of the media don't always cover some of those events to the extent that other events might get covered; that a protest will get blown out of the water, and yet an attack or a foiled attack doesn't necessarily get the same coverage."

He did not expand on the 'reasons' mentioned by President Trump.

Journalists, however, were quick to point out that many of the attacks mentioned on the White House list received in-depth coverage across the US and international media.

BBC, meanwhile, put together a list of how it covered all the different attacks & attempted attacks - although noted there was some uncertainty over which incidents some of the entries on the White House list referred to.

"Some terrorist incidents do get more coverage than others, a point hotly debated on social media," the BBC adds.

Meanwhile, the mother of a British backpacker who was stabbed to death in Australia has hit out at the White House for classifying her daughter's death as a "terror attack".

Mia Ayliffe-Chung, 21, and fellow Briton Thomas Jackson died at a Queensland hostel in August, following an attack which police said was not terror-related.

In an open letter, Rose Ayliffe wrote: “My daughter’s death will not be used to further this insane persecution of innocent people.

"The circumstances of Mia and Tom’s deaths prove that those with the strength of character to travel the world and learn about other cultures should be cherished as brave, resilient characters who have so much to offer if they are nurtured and given opportunities rather than defeated by adverse circumstances."

Additional reporting by IRN