Donald Trump
US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to supporters at an event at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, on 24 November 2015Randall Hill/Reuters

US presidential hopeful Donald Trump has been criticised for doing an impression of a New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski who has a condition called arthrogryposis. This condition limits the movement of his arms.

"Now, the poor guy — you've got to see this guy," Trump said, while waving his arms at an odd angle.'"Ah, I don't know what I said! I don't remember!'" Trump was quoted as saying by The Washington Post.

Trump was addressing a rally in South Carolina on 24 November, where he was backing his claim that "thousands" of Muslims were rejoicing after the 9/11 terror attacks apparently citing an article by the reporter. Kovaleski's report, however, had said that authorities in Jersey City had "detained and questioned a number of people who were allegedly seen celebrating the attacks and holding tailgate-style parties on rooftops while they watched the devastation on the other side of the river". The article was published in The Washington Post a few days after the terror attacks took place in 2011.

Kovaleski told CNN that he does "not recall anyone saying there were thousands, or even hundreds, of people celebrating". He also said he was sure that Trump, who he had covered between 1987 and 1993 when he was reporting for New York Daily News, remembered his condition.

"The sad part about it is, it didn't in the slightest bit jar or surprise me that Donald Trump would do something this low-rent, given his track record," Kovaleski said.

"We think it's outrageous that he would ridicule the appearance of one of our reporters," New York Times spokeswoman told Politico, a news site. Trump's campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks has not made any comments on the incident.