Kellyanne Conway defends Donald Trump’s silence over Quebec Mosque shooting

'He doesn’t tweet about everything,' says the senior presidential advisor

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The Independent US

Donald Trump "doesn’t tweet about everything", according to one of his senior advisors who was asked about the President’s silence following a recent "terrorist attack" on a Quebec mosque

Kellyanne Conway said that the US leader was “sympathetic to any loss of life”, when asked by CNN’s Jake Tapper about why Mr Trump had not commented about the attack which claimed the lives of six people and injured 19 in Quebec City.

Alexandre Bissonnette, a 27-year-old student, has been charged with six counts of murder for the 29 January slaughter, which Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called a "terrorist attack".  

Ms Conway, who came in for widespread ridicule after she said controversial comments by the White House press secretary were not lies but "alternative facts", insisted the President “doesn’t comment or tweet about everything”. 

Mr Tapper asked: “In Quebec City last week, a white right-wing terrorist opened fire on a mosque. A mosque filled with men, women and children. Six people were killed. President Trump has not said or tweeted one public word about this. You want to talk about ignoring terrorism? Why hasn't the president offered his sympathy to our neighbours in the north?” 

In response, Ms Conway said: “He is sympathetic to any loss of life. It’s completely senseless and it needs to stop regardless of who is launching the attack. [Mr Trump] is trying to stop terrorism and people wanting to do harm to this country and I’m sure in the case of our neighbours to the north. I’m sure when the Prime Minister of Canada comes here next week they will talk about that." 

She added: “He doesn’t tweet about everything; he doesn’t make a comment about everything."

However, it was put to her that Mr Trump had tweeted about an attack on soldiers at the Louvre in Paris by a man wielding machetes. A 29-year-old Egyptian, Abdullah Hamamy, remains under arrest in hospital after he was shot during the incident. 

“Are these victims [of the mosque attack] any less dead than the ones killed by Islamic radical terrorists?" Mr Tapper asked. 

“No, not at all,”  Ms Conway replied, before making reference to the fact that the Orlando attack was carried out by an American citizen. 

Her comments came shortly after Mr Trump accused the media of covering up terrorist attacks, despite hours and days of wall-to-wall coverage of both of the attacks cited by the White House.

Although Mr Trump hasn’t made any public reference to the mosque attack, his administration appeared to cite it as justification for the President’s own anti-terror policies.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said the shooting was a “terrible reminder “of why the Republican leader must be “proactive, rather than reactive”.

* This article originally described the Quebec attack as taking place in Montreal; in fact it took place in Quebec City. Updated 9/2/17