US President Donald Trump has urged media outlets in the country to abstain from spreading false rumours during the nation's critical fight against the deadly coronavirus pandemic. According to Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 300,915 confirmed virus cases in the US and there have been 8,162 deaths so far.
"We want to save lives; we want as few lives lost as possible. It is therefore critical that certain media outlets stop spreading false rumours and creating fear and even panic with the public. It's just incredible,” Trump told reporters during a press conference at the White House, without taking the names of any media organisation.
In the past, Donald Trump has identified organisations like The New York Times, The Washington Post and CNN as fake media. During his series of the daily news conference – which has continued uninterrupted for about a fortnight now, Trump has quite often slammed the media and has entered into an exchange of words with some of the White House correspondents.
"I could name them but it's the same ones always the same ones and I guess they are looking for ratings. I don't know what they're looking for. So bad for our country and so bad the people understand it,” he said. “You look at the levels and approval ratings and they are the lowest they have ever been for media. It is so bad for our country, so bad for the world. Put it together for a little while, get this over with and then go back to your fake news,” Trump added.
President Trump:— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) April 4, 2020
"It is critical that certain media outlets stop spreading false rumors and creating fear and panic with the public... Get this over with and then go back to your Fake News” pic.twitter.com/kmyPXFScF8
Trump said on Saturday that the United States was heading into what could be its “toughest” weeks as coronavirus cases swell nationwide. He warned states not to inflate their needs for critical medical equipment. “There will be a lot of death, unfortunately. There will be death,” Trump said in a somber start to his daily briefing on the pandemic.
Trump also revisited a familiar message, saying he wants to get the economy up and running as soon as possible. At one point during the unfolding outbreak, Trump said he had hoped to open up businesses by Easter, April 12. He later acknowledged that was not possible, ceding the month of April after seeing rising death toll projections. Much of the country is under orders to stay home, including professional sports leagues that were among the first to clamp down in the pandemic.
(With AP inputs)