Washington (AFP) – US President Donald Trump said Wednesday that First Lady Melania Trump was recovering well from surgery, but complained bitterly about “Fake News” media coverage of her long absence from public view.
Trump said the Slovenia-born former model was “doing really well!”
She underwent surgery at Walter Reed hospital on May 14 for what aides called a “benign” kidney condition and was released on May 19.
Her last fully public appearance was on May 10, when she accompanied the president to Andrews Air Force base in Maryland to welcome home three American hostages from North Korea.
She has since attended one closed-door White House event and is expected to appear in public later Wednesday, appearing at an event at the Federal Emergency Management Agency Headquarters with her husband.
Her prolonged absence sparked wild and unconfirmed speculation that about the reason for her absence.
“The Fake News Media has been so unfair, and vicious, to my wife and our great First Lady, Melania,” Trump tweeted.
“During her recovery from surgery they reported everything from near death, to facelift, to left the W.H. (and me) for N.Y. or Virginia, to abuse. All Fake, she is doing really well!”
No major media outlets substantiated online conspiracy theories about her absence.
Trump continued: “Four reporters spotted Melania in the White House last week walking merrily along to a meeting. They never reported the sighting because it would hurt the sick narrative that she was living in a different part of the world, was really ill, or whatever. Fake News is really bad!”
Two White House journalists said they were present when the first lady was spotted on May 30, and reported at the time that she looked well.