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Canadian Press forced to issue embarrassing retractions after 'hit piece' on Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievre
Photographer: David Kawai/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Canadian Press forced to issue embarrassing retractions after 'hit piece' on Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievre

The Canadian Press was forced to issue three retractions about Conservative Party of Canada leader Pierre Poilievre after the politician said he was attacked with a "hit piece" that had been "thoroughly discredited."

The Canadian Press published a report about the Conservative leader blaming Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for poor relations with India.

Trudeau had recently announced that he would direct intelligence agencies to investigate "credible" information regarding a "potential link" between India's government and the killing of a Sikh leader in Canada.

India suspended new visas for Canadians and asked Canada to reduce its diplomatic presence in the country, Reuters reported.

In its piece, the Canadian Press seemingly concocted links between Poilievre's comments and Trudeau and appeared to misinterpret his remarks about Sikhs.

"BREAKING: Canadian Press forced to retract three separate 'erroneous statements' from one story alone," Poilievre wrote on his X page. "It was another false hit piece now thoroughly discredited. Remember that next time they attack me," he wrote.

In an update to the story, the Canadian Press issued an unformatted retraction days later. The outlet admitted that the headline included "erroneously reported" comments that Poilievre did not say:

"Note to readers: This is a corrected story. In a headline on an earlier version of the story, The Canadian Press erroneously reported that Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre cited Sikh aggression toward Indian envoys when blaming Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for Canada's poor relations with India. In fact, Poilievre did not mention Sikhs during his interview with Namaste Radio Toronto, which was the basis for the story," the retraction began.

"The Canadian Press also erroneously reported that Poilievre blamed Trudeau for 'aggression shown to … Indian diplomats at public events.' In fact, Poilievre did not link those remarks to Trudeau," it continued.

"As well, the story erroneously reported the World Sikh Organization of Canada had argued that Poilievre was indirectly pointing the finger at Sikhs. In fact, the group's lawyer Balpreet Singh had argued that Poilievre was wrong to point the finger at anyone other than the Indian government."

Poilievre was fresh off a wave of positive press just days before the misattributed story, after the opposition leader fielded questions from a reporter while casually eating an apple.

The optics of the exchange, along with his simple responses to a poor line of questioning, resulted in a viral moment for the politician.

Poilievre was told by the reporter that "a lot of people" had accused him of "taking a page out of the Donald Trump book," to which he simply responded by asking, "Which people would say that?"

"Well, I'm sure a great many Canadians, but ..."

"Like who?" Poilievre said again, before the reporter eventually changed his line of questioning.

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