CIA Director Mike Pompeo is expected to brief the House Intelligence Committee late Tuesday to provide lawmakers information on reports that President Donald Trump shared classified information with Russian officials last week during a meeting at the White House.
Last Wednesday, one day after firing FBI director James Comey who was leading a probe into alleged links between the Trump campaign and Moscow, Mr. Trump met Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak in the Oval Office. Reports on Tuesday alleged Mr. Trump inappropriately shared sensitive information.
Mr. Trump has said he has every right to share what he did for “humanitarian reasons” and with the aim that Russia would accelerate its fight against ISIS.
House members return from a one-week recess mid-day Tuesday and the closed-door Intelligence Committee briefing with Mr. Pompeo was reportedly previously scheduled. He is expected to address demands from lawmakers who want more details about what Mr. Trump and Russian officials actually discussed.
The Washington Post, which first reported the matter, has said the move raises serious questions about the ability of Mr. Trump to protect the nation’s intelligence sources.
On Monday, H.R. McMaster, Mr Trump’s national security adviser, defended the president’s actions. On Tuesday, he stepped up his defense — this time targeting the leak of what occurred during Mr. Trump’s Oval Office meeting.
“I stand by my statement that I made yesterday,” Mr. McMaster said. “What I’m saying is really the premise of that article is false … I think what I’d like to see really debated more, is that our national security has been put at risk by those violating confidentiality and those releasing information to the press.”
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