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Speaking to supporters at a campaign-style rally in Missoula, Montana, on Thursday, Trump praised Gianforte's wrestling skills, drawing cheers and laughs from the crowd.

The British government has condemned U.S. president Donald Trump's praise of a Republican congressman who assaulted a Guardian journalist a year ago. "Any guy that can do a body-slam, he's my kind of guy".

The Guardian also castigated Trump, and said the president risks encouraging further violence against reporters. "So I was in Rome with a lot of the leaders from other countries talking about all sorts of things, and I heard about it". This was the day of the election or just before, and I thought 'Oh, this is awful! "I had heard that he body-slammed a reporter. and I said, 'Oh, this is bad, he's going to lose the election.' Then I said, 'I know Montana pretty well, ' and I said I think it might help him. I think it might help him.' And it did", Trump said.

Trump, who has called the media the enemy of the American people and regularly derides journalists as "fake news", made his latest remarks during a campaign rally in Montana. In June 2017, he was sentenced to 40 hours of community service and 20 hours of anger management on assault charges and assessed a $385 fine and a six-month suspended jail sentence by the Gallatin County justice court.

He added: "We hope decent people will denounce these comments and tht the president will see fit to apologise for them". The Guardian has also reacted to the news, noting that the United States president had applauded "the assault of an American journalist".

US President Donald Trump praised a congressman for a physical attack on a journalist, mimicking the assault to cheers at a rally.

"In Washington he talks like he's from Montana and he votes like he's Nancy Pelosi", stated President Trump.

Trump raised the incident amid calls for a stronger response from his administration to reports that US -based journalist Jamal Khashoggi was ambushed inside the Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul, then tortured, killed and dismembered.