The State Department has yet to explain or defend its highly unusual decision to remove an NPR reporter from an upcoming trip by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at a time when Pompeo is fuming about the public radio network.
NPR’s diplomatic correspondent Michele Kelemen was supposed to be the radio representative on the plane that will travel with Pompeo to the United Kingdom, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan in the coming days. He departs for the UK on Wednesday.
On Tuesday afternoon NPR CEO John Lansing said the State Department “has been unresponsive” to its inquiries.
The Department of Homeland Security violated the First Amendment when it allegedly tracked and interrogated five journalists between 2018 and 2019, the American Civil Liberties Union said in a lawsuit filed Wednesday. The lawsuit includes accounts by five freelance photojournalists, all of whom are US citizens and were stopped by Customs and Border Protection, an agency within DHS, while traveling to and from Mexico between November 2018 and January 2019.