Earlier this month Donald Trump announced that April would be declared 'National Sexual Awareness and Prevention Month' and has begun the month in an unusual manner by defending his long term friend Bill O'Reilly of sexual harassment allegations.

The allegations

It was reported in the New York Times earlier this week that five women who had made claims of sexual harassment or inappropriate behaviour against Fox News anchor Bill O'Reilly had received settlements totalling up to $13 million. As a result of the claims more than two dozen high-profile advertisers have removed their support from the flagship programme.

For his part, O'Reilly has denied that the claims have any merit but Fox News parent company, 21st Century Fox, has said it " takes matters of the workplace very seriously. "

President Trump lends his support

In a bizarre move, the president stepped in to lend his support to O'Reilly stating that he was " a good person" and had done nothing wrong adding that he believed O'Reilly should not have settled.

This is coming from a man who has claims of sexual harassment still outstanding against him and has declared on the now infamous tape that "when you're a star, you can do anything. " Given that his support for O'Reilly comes only a week after a White House proposal against sexual harassment and violence stated that the president believed " we must develop strategies to eliminate these crimes" makes his support all the more questionable.

That a president should step in on such a delicate matter is unheard of but the relationship between Trump and O'Reilly and Fox News is strong. The president frequently praises the network and recently urged his 27 million Twitter followers to tune in for a Saturday evening show. He has appeared regularly on O'Reilly's show " The O'Reilly Factor" and gave him a prime time interview as president-elect during Fox's Super Bowl pre-game show.

The Murdoch connection

With his repeated hectoring of journalists and claims of "fake news" Mr Trump has fostered an increasingly strong bond with media mogul Rupert Murdoch, CEO of 21st Century Fox, the parent company of Fox News. It is said the two speak frequently and Trump claims to be on first name terms with the tycoon.

Murdoch mentored Jared Kushner when he acquired The New York Observer in 2006 and now Kushner has a direct link to Trump's administration as his senior adviser.

Just how far the link between media mogul and US President will go remains to be seen.