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Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 October 2018

Trump casts doubt on sexual assault claims against Kavanaugh

He demanded Christine Blasey Ford provide evidence of the allegations from 36 years ago

Trump challenged the accuser of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh for the first time on September 21, 2018, demanding she provide evidence that he sexually assaulted her when they were both teenagers.  / AFP / MANDEL NGAN
Trump challenged the accuser of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh for the first time on September 21, 2018, demanding she provide evidence that he sexually assaulted her when they were both teenagers.  / AFP / MANDEL NGAN

President Donald Trump on Friday sought to defend Brett Kavanaugh, his nominee for Supreme Court justice, against sexual assault allegations by questioning why his accuser took 36 years to go public with her claims.

In an interview with Fox News, Mr Trump asked: "Why didn't somebody call the FBI 36 years ago? I mean you could also say when did this all happen, what's going on? To take a man like this and besmirch – now with that being said, let her have her say and let's see how it all works out".

Mr Trump also took to Twitter, where he described Mr Kavanaugh as a "fine man, with an impeccable reputation".

He said: "I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!"

Professor Christine Blasey Ford has accused Mr Kavanaugh of assaulting her at a party while the two were in high school in Washington more than 30 years ago.

Dr Ford’s lawyer defended the 51-year-old Palo Alto University professor’s decision to come forward almost four decades after the event. “I think that she felt strongly that this was the right thing to do. She had to weigh the risks to herself and her family in doing so. And so, I think she feels that it was her civic duty to come forward," said Debra S Katz.

Although Mr Kavanaugh denies the allegations, both he and Mrs Ford have agreed to testify in front of the US Senate, under oath. The allegations have held up Mr Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing.