Both Democrats and Republicans in the United States Congress on Monday demanded fast solutions from the administration of President Donald Trump after media shops reported that US intelligence businesses have tied Russian reward gives to Taliban fighters on to the deaths of US troopers.
It was unclear what number of American or coalition troops might have been focused or killed below the Russian programme, in accordance with a report in the Washington Post, however the intelligence stemmed from US navy interrogations of captured fighters and was handed up from US Special Operations forces in Afghanistan.
The New York Times individually reported that US intelligence officers consider no less than one American navy dying stemmed from the rewards, citing two officers briefed on the matter.
The experiences drew outrage from Trump critics who argued it was unconscionable for him to have recognized of a Russian effort to kill US servicemen whereas searching for to enhance relations with Moscow.
Intel simply reported to me that they didn’t discover this information credible, and due to this fact didn’t report it to me or @VP. Possibly one other fabricated Russia Hoax, possibly by the Fake News @nytimesbooks, desirous to make Republicans look dangerous!!! https://t.co/cowOmP7T1S
— Donald J. Trump (@actualDonaldTrump) June 29, 2020
Trump sought to solid doubt on the Russian reward effort, saying on Sunday he was by no means briefed on the matter and that US intelligence officers informed him this was as a result of the info was not credible.
The Kremlin on Monday additionally denied the report, first printed by the New York Times on Friday, that Russian forces had supplied to pay Taliban-linked fighters to kill American and different Western troopers in Afghanistan.
“These allegations are lies,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov informed reporters, including that Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin had by no means mentioned the allegations.
Two US authorities sources acquainted with intelligence reporting and evaluation confirmed to the Reuters News Agency the existence of categorised US intelligence experiences alleging the rewards. The sources indicated US authorities businesses and consultants on stability believed the intelligence reporting to be credible.
I’m calling for a direct briefing from the Directors of National Intelligence and the CIA for all 100 Senators on experiences that Russia positioned bounties on US Troops in Afghanistan.
We additionally must know whether or not or not President Trump was informed this info, and if that’s the case, when.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) June 29, 2020
Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi wrote to the high two US intelligence officers on Monday and sought a direct briefing for legislators.
“Congress and the country need answers now. I therefore request an interagency brief for all House Members immediately,” Pelosi wrote in a letter to Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe and CIA Director Gina Haspel.
Congresswoman Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the Number 3 Republican in the House, referred to as on the White House to share extra info with Congress, saying, if true, legislators must know: “Who did know and when?” and, referring to Russian chief Vladimir Putin: “What has been done in response to protect our forces & hold Putin accountable?”
Democratic presumptive presidential nominee Joe Biden mentioned experiences Trump was conscious of the Russian rewards can be a “truly shocking revelation” about the commander in chief.
Imperative Congress get to the backside of latest media experiences that Russian GRU items in Afghanistan have supplied to pay the Taliban to kill American troopers with the purpose of pushing America out of the area. https://t.co/dm4QWATzgg
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) June 27, 2020
White House spokeswoman Kayleigh McEnany mentioned at a information briefing on Monday some members of Congress are being briefed on the matter on Monday. She added that the cause Trump himself was not briefed on the matter was as a result of there was no consensus inside the intelligence group that the info was dependable or correct.
The New York Times and the Associated Press information company additionally reported US navy and intelligence officers had been reviewing previous casualties to see whether or not they had been tied to Moscow’s alleged funds.
One incident below assessment was an April 2019 assault by the Taliban on an American convoy that killed three US marines, the AP mentioned, citing unidentified sources. Officials had been additionally probing whether or not $500,000 discovered throughout a US raid on a Taliban outpost earlier this 12 months was tied to the programme, it added.