The Protection Division stated late Monday that there’s “no corroborating proof” to help the explosive New York Instances report final week that stated the Russian army offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
The report despatched shock waves via Washington and prompted President Trump to outright deny realizing something concerning the intel cited within the report.
“So far, DOD has no corroborating proof to validate the latest allegations present in open-source experiences. Regardless, we all the time take the security and safety of our forces in Afghanistan—and world wide—most significantly and due to this fact constantly undertake measures to stop hurt from potential threats,” Jonathan Hoffman, the chief Pentagon spokesman, stated in an announcement.
The New York Instances, citing unnamed officers, reported Friday that it’s believed that some “Islamist militants” or “felony components” collected payouts. The report identified that 20 Individuals have been killed there in 2019. It was not clear if any of these deaths have been the results of a bounty.
Robert O’Brien, the nationwide safety adviser, stated in an announcement that because the allegations within the report weren’t verified by the intelligence neighborhood, Trump has not been briefed on the matter.
“Nonetheless, the administration, together with the Nationwide Safety Council employees, have been making ready ought to the scenario warrant motion,” he stated. He stated that Trump’s prime precedence is the safety of Individuals and the security of the women and men who serve within the army.
Rep. Michael McCaul, the rating member of the Home International Affairs Committee, and Rep. Adam Kinzinger have been within the briefing led by Director of Nationwide Intelligence John Ratcliffe, White Home chief of employees Mark Meadows and nationwide safety adviser Robert O’Brien. McCaul and Kinzinger stated in an announcement that lawmakers have been instructed “there may be an ongoing evaluation to find out the accuracy of those experiences.”
“If the intelligence evaluation course of verifies the experiences, we strongly encourage the Administration to take swift and critical motion to carry the Putin regime accountable,” they stated.
The White Home has maintained that neither Trump nor Vice President Mike Pence was briefed on such intelligence. “This doesn’t communicate to the benefit of the alleged intelligence however to the inaccuracy of the New York Instances story erroneously suggesting that President Trump was briefed on this matter,” press secretary Kayleigh McEnany stated in an announcement.
A White Home official instructed Fox Information on Monday that Trump has now been briefed on the difficulty. It’s unclear precisely when this briefing occurred, however the official says it occurred someday “after the NY Instances reported on unverified intelligence.”
The assertion is at odds with the White Home, which insisted that Trump has nonetheless not been briefed.
Thomas Joscelyn, a senior fellow on the Basis for Protection of Democracies, a assume tank, told the Wall Road Journal that “Moscow’s willingness to embrace the Taliban overtly and publically dates again a number of years” and he wouldn’t be stunned if there may be fact to the report.
Fox Information’ Andrew O’Reilly and the Related Press contributed to this report
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