Donald TrumpDonald TrumpCarl Bernstein: Trump’s Russia talk ‘disqualifying’ Five things to watch in Obama’s speech Green candidate: Sanders ‘has broken’ with fans MORE is defending Russian President Vladimir Putin against allegations that he gave orders to kill journalists in his country.
“As far as the reporters are concerned, obviously I don’t want that to happen, I think it’s horrible,” Trump, the GOP presidential front-runner, said on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday. “But, in all fairness to Putin, you’re saying he killed people, I haven’t seen that. I don’t know that he has. Have you been able to prove that?
“Now, I think it would be despicable if that took place, but I haven’t seen any evidence that he’s killed anybody in terms of reporters,” he said.
Trump acknowledged that there are allegations of nefarious activity by the Russian president but said Putin has “always denied it.”
“He’s always denied it. He’s never — it’s never been proven that he’s killed anybody. So, you know, you’re supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, at least in our country. It has not been proven that he’s killed reporters,” he said.
Republicans and Democrats alike have criticized the billionaire businessman for his congenial rhetoric about Putin.