U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a statement on Saturday to defend himself against allegations that he swore and yelled at veteran NPR reporter Mary Louise Kelly, calling her a liar. “NPR reporter Mary Louise Kelly lied to me, twice,” the statement says. “First, last month, in setting up our interview, and then again yesterday, in agreeing to have our post-interview conversation off the record.” Pompeo went on to call Kelly “shameful” in choosing to “violate the basic rules of journalism and decency.” Pompeo went on to say, “It is no wonder that the American people distrust many in the media when they so consistently demonstrate their agenda and their absence of integrity.”
Kelly said that the secretary of state “silently glared” and left the room after she pressed him on Ukraine and the firing of U.S. Ambassador Marie L. Yovanovitch. She said she was then asked by an aide to follow him without her recorder, but without any agreement that the conversation was off the record. She said Pompeo shouted and swore at her, then asked her to point out where Ukraine was on an unmarked map to which he referred in his statement. “It is worth nothing that Bangladesh is NOT Ukraine,” Pompeo wrote.