(CNN)The State Department on Monday said it would not be distributing a transcript or list of attendees from a briefing call with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held that evening -- a call from which the department's press corps was excluded and only "faith-based media" allowed.
State Department bars press corps from Pompeo briefing, won't release list of attendees
The afternoon phone briefing was to discuss "international religious freedom" with the secretary -- who rarely participates in such calls -- ahead of his trip to the Middle East. One member of the State Department press corps was invited, only to be un-invited after RSVPing. That reporter was told that the call was for "faith-based media only."
CNN also RSVP'd to organizers, asking to be included, but received no reply.
Despite repeated inquires and complaints from members of the press corps who are based at the department, the State Department on Monday night said they would not be providing a transcript of the call, a list of faith-based media outlets who were allowed to participate or the criteria to be invited.
Officials would not answer questions about whether a range of faiths was included.
A reporter with EWTN Global Catholic Television told CNN they were not originally invited to take part in Monday's call with Pompeo but had asked the State Department if they could take part. The reporter was then invited to a different call involving faith-based organizations and Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback that took place Tuesday and was organized by an outside group.
An article from Religion News Service -- which notes that it "is not a faith-based media organization, but rather a secular news service that covers religion, spirituality and ethics" -- said participants in the Pompeo briefing "were not told that the call was limited to fai