President Trump tweets he did share ISIS info with Russians officials and defends the choice
WHITE HOUSE — In tweets sent Tuesday morning, President Donald Trump indicated he did share information about ISIS with visiting Russian officials.
The President wrote, “As President I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled W.H. meeting) which I have the right to do, facts pertaining to terrorism and airline safety. Humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against ISIS & terrorism.”
Monday night, The Washington Post quoted anonymous sources who said President Trump revealed highly classified information that could put an informant in danger.
The President does have the right to declassify information.
President Trump met Sergey Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, and Sergei Kislyak, the Russian ambassador in the US in the Oval Office last Wednesday.
Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday dismissed the reports as “yet more nonsense” and said that Moscow doesn’t “want to have to do anything with it,” adding that “there is nothing to confirm or deny.”
National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, who was at the meeting, read this statement to reporters.
“There’s nothing that the president takes more seriously than the security of the American people. The story that came out tonight, as reported, is false. The president and the foreign minister reviewed a range of common threats to our two countries, including threats to civil aviation. At no time, at no time, were intelligence sources or methods discussed, and the president did not disclose any military operations that were not already publicly known. Two other senior officials who were present, including the secretary of state, remember the meeting the same way and have said so. Their on the record accounts should outweigh the anonymous sources. I was in the room. It didn’t happen.”
The information reportedly has to do with ISIS trying to use laptop computers in an airline attack. At least some of that information has been publicly known for a while.