An op-ed writer for the publication The Nation was forcibly removed from a press briefing between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin on Monday, minutes before the two leaders took questions from the press.
The man removed was Sam Husseini, said Vice President of Communications at The Nation Caitlin Graf. Husseini is the communications director of the Institute for Public Accuracy, a Washington D.C.-based nonprofit that promotes progressive experts as alternative sources for media reporters.
Husseini was holding a sign that Russian authorities reportedly called a "malicious item." He had a sign that said "Nuclear Weapon Ban Treaty."
In a statement to supporters, The Nation's editor Katrina vanden Heuvel said the publication was following the matter "closely," and requested donations.
"At a time when this administration consistently denigrates the media, we’re deeply troubled by these reports," vanden Heuvel wrote. "Independent journalism is needed more than ever to confront a White House that considers media the enemy of the people, and relentlessly attacks the media in order to delegitimize checks on this administration’s abuse of power."
The press conference followed a one-on-one meeting between Trump and Putin in Helsinki, Finland, just three days after the Trump administration's Justice Department charged 12 Russian government officials with interfering in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.