Republican lawmakers are demanding answers from the Trump administration after the New York Times on Friday reported that a Russian military intelligence unit was secretly offering bounties to Taliban-linked militants in Afghanistan for killing American troops amid the peace talks to end the long-running war there.
The White House on Saturday denied that President Donald Trump had been briefed on the plot in March, as reported by the newspaper.
The New York Times reported on Sunday that the American intelligence community members and commandos were well aware of the bounty plot in January.
Top Republican Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) on Sunday demanded the White House explain “Why weren’t the president or vice president briefed?” on the bounty plot and who knew and when did they know.
If reporting about Russian bounties on US forces is true, the White House must explain:
1. Why weren’t the president or vice president briefed? Was the info in the PDB?
2. Who did know and when?
3. What has been done in response to protect our forces & hold Putin accountable?
— Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney) June 28, 2020
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) demanded the Trump administration testify before “Congress immediately as to the reliability of these news reports.”
“I expect the Trump administration to take such allegations seriously and inform Congress immediately as to the reliability of these news reports,” he tweeted.
I expect the Trump Administration to take such allegations seriously and inform Congress immediately as to the reliability of these news reports.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) June 27, 2020
Speaker Nancy Pelosi also demanded answers from the Trump administration on Sunday.
“This is as bad as it gets, and yet the president will not confront the Russians on this score, denies being briefed. Whether he is or not, his administration knows,” Pelosi said Sunday on ABC.