President Donald Trump has dismissed claims he called US war dead 'losers' and 'suckers' during a visit to a World War I cemetery in France.

The US president dubbed the article "a hoax". 

Mr Trump also attacked his former chief of staff John Kelly as the likely source of the article,  which claimed he also called the late Republican senator and decorated war hero John McCain a 'loser'.

The alleged remarks were first reported in the Atlantic magazine, and some details were corroborated by the Associated Press and Fox News.

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Trump is reported to have cancelled a visit to a US cemetery outside Paris in 2018 because he said it was "filled with losers".

The Atlantic's reporting was based on anonymous sources who told the magazine that Donald Trump rejected the idea of visiting because the rain would dishevel his hair. 

Responding, however, President Trump told reporters at a press conference "To think that I would make statements negative to our military and our fallen heroes when nobody's done what I've done with the budgets, with the military budgets, with getting pay raises for our military.

"It is a disgraceful situation by a magazine that's a terrible magazine."

The comments are the latest political controversy to dominate the upcoming US election with President Trump suggesting the source of the story was his former White House chief of staff, John Kelly. who, according to Trump "was unable to handle the pressure of this job".

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Democratic candidate Joe Biden responded by saying his rival was "unfit" to lead saying: "If the article is true - and it appears to be, based on other things he's said - it is absolutely damning. It is a disgrace."

Melania Trump tweeted in support of her husband however stating on social media: "The Atlantic story is not true. It has become a very dangerous time when anonymous sources are believed above all else, & no one knows their motivation. This is not journalism - It is activism. And it is a disservice to the people of our great nation."

Donald Trump retweeted content and comments from journalists, political commentators and more denying the story.