United States President Donald Trump on Thursday denied having tried to sack Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 US presidential elections and also whether Trump’s campaign colluded with Moscow.

“If I wanted to fire Robert Mueller in December, as reported by the failing New York Times, I would have fired him,” the president said on Twitter. “Just more fake news from a biased newspaper!”

On Tuesday, The New York Times had reported that Trump had tried to have Mueller’s investigation shut down in early December after reports that the special counsel had expanded his Russia investigation and had issued subpoenaes to obtain information about his business dealings with Deutsche Bank.

In March, Trump had said there was no need for a special counsel in the investigation as there was no cause to believe a crime had been committed. This was a day before John Dowd, the lead lawyer on the president’s team handling the Russia investigation, resigned.

The president’s attorneys have reportedly been negotiating with Mueller’s team about a potential interview with Trump. In January, the US president had said he was looking forward to being questioned.