Trump blasts FBI counter-intelligence probe into concerns he worked for Russia

Source:AFP Published: 2019/1/13 20:03:39

US President Donald Trump blasted the FBI on Saturday, insisting it acted "for no reason & with no proof" when it opened an investigation into whether he was acting on Russia's behalf after he fired the agency's director, James Comey, in May 2017.

The New York Times reported that the FBI launched the previously undisclosed counter-intelligence investigation to determine whether Trump posed a national security threat, at the same time that it opened a criminal probe into possible obstruction of justice by the president.

The FBI investigation was subsequently folded into the broader probe by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into Russia's meddling in the 2016 election and possible collaboration by the Trump campaign.

No evidence has publicly emerged that Trump was secretly in contact with or took direction from Russian officials, the Times said.

"Wow, just learned in the Failing New York Times that the corrupt former leaders of the FBI, almost all fired or forced to leave the agency for some very bad reasons, opened up an investigation on me, for no reason & with no proof, after I fired Lyin' James Comey, a total sleaze!" Trump tweeted.

According to Trump, "the FBI was in complete turmoil... because of Comey's poor leadership" and the way he handled the investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private server to send some government emails. 

"My firing of James Comey was a great day for America," Trump said, describing the former FBI director as "a Crooked Cop who is being totally protected by his best friend, Bob Mueller."

Asked in a late Saturday interview with Fox News whether he had ever worked for Russia, Trump replied: "I think it's the most insulting thing I've ever been asked... I think it is the most insulting article I've ever had written and if you read the article, you'd see that they found absolutely nothing."

Such standard reactions from Trump "do nothing to address the incredibly serious nature of these allegations," said Democratic Congressman Jerrold Nadler.

"There is no reason to doubt the seriousness or professionalism of the FBI," Nadler said in a statement which said his committee "will take steps to better understand both the president's actions and the FBI's response to that behavior, and to make certain that these career investigators are protected from President Trump's increasingly unhinged attacks."

The Times said that the FBI had been suspicious of Trump's ties to Russia during the 2016 campaign.



Posted in: AMERICAS

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