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For the second straight week, a foreign government is angry at a 21st Century Fox brand.
Reuters reports that The Kremlin is demanding an apology from FOX for comments made by Fox News host Bill O’Reilly during a pre-Super Bowl interview with Pres. Donald Trump. O’Reilly referred to Russian President Vladimir Putin as “a killer” during the interview.
“We consider such words from the Fox TV company to be unacceptable and insulting, and honestly speaking, we would prefer to get an apology from such a respected TV company,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call.
Last week, the Office of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reached out to Fox News about a social media post showing inaccurate information about the deadly Quebec City mosque terror attack. The network’s verified account tweeted that the terror suspect “was of Moroccan origin,” but that wasn’t true. The suspect was actually a French-Canadian man, and the network had still not retracted their tweet long after the suspect’s identity was confirmed. Fox News.com eventually sent out a statement saying: “We initially corrected the misreported information with a tweet and an update to the story on Monday. The earlier tweets have now been deleted. We regret the error.”
Here’s part of the transcript of Pres. Trump’s interview with O’Reilly.
O’REILLY: Do you respect Putin?
TRUMP: I do respect him but—
O’REILLY: Do you? Why?
TRUMP: Well I respect a lot of people but that doesn’t mean I’m going to get along with him. He’s a leader of his country. I say it’s better to get along with Russia then not. And if Russia helps us in the fight against ISIS, which is a major fight, and Islamic terrorism all over the world–
TRUMP: –major fight, that’s a good thing. Will I get along with him? I have no idea.
O’REILLY: But he’s a killer though. Putin’s a killer.
TRUMP: Lot of killers. We’ve got a lot of killers. Boy you think our country’s so innocent? You think our country’s so innocent?
O’REILLY: I don’t know of any government leaders that are killers.
TRUMP: Well – take a look at what we’ve done too. We’ve made a lot of mistakes. I’ve been against the war in Iraq from the beginning.
O’REILLY: Mistakes are different than–
TRUMP: A lot of mistakes – okay – but a lot of people were killed. So a lot of killers around, believe me.
UPDATE: At 2:40 p.m. ET, a Fox News spokesperson told us that O’Reilly will address this matter on his show tonight.