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This US Ambassador Said On Camera His Anti-Muslim Comments Were "Fake News" — Then Claimed He Didn't Say "Fake News"

"I didn't call that fake news — I didn't use the words today," Pete Hoekstra said, after using the words.

Posted on December 22, 2017, at 9:15 a.m. ET

This is President Trump's recently confirmed ambassador to the Netherlands, Pete Hoekstra, a former US representative who is Dutch-American.

Saul Loeb / AFP / Getty Images

Hoekstra, who is in the process of taking office, did what should have been a routine interview with Dutch public television news program Nieuwsuur ("News Hour"). Here's a shot of Hoekstra with his breakfast:

But more than halfway through the interview, the journalist asked Hoekstra about some anti-Muslim comments he made about the Netherlands in the past — and things got real strange, real fast.

"Speaking of threats," the journalist said, "at one point you mentioned in a debate that there are no-go zones in the Netherlands and that cars and politicians are being set on fire."

Some far-right conservatives and many anti-Muslim activists push the false conspiracy theory that there are "no-go zone" urban enclaves throughout Europe where the government has no control, where non-Muslims are not allowed to enter, and where Sharia, or Islamic law, is imposed on residents.

"I didn't say that, that is actually an incorrect statement, we could call it fake news. ... It is not what I said," Hoekstra said, using President Trump's misused favorite line for news he doesn't like.

So the news program ran a video clip of a 2015 which Hoekstra said just that:

@Nieuwsuur to new US ambassador: "You mentioned [..] that there are no go-zones in the Netherlands and that cars an…

Twitter: @Nieuwsuur

"You call it it fake news," the journalist said. Hoekstra shot back, "I didn't call that fake news — I didn't use the words today," he said...right after he literally did just that.

The journalist just looked around, like, what just happened?

BuzzFeed News has reached out to the State Department for comment. Meanwhile, here's the whole video:

Pete Hoekstra is vanaf januari de nieuwe Amerikaanse #ambassadeur in Nederland. Hij staat bekend om zijn conservati…

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.