Russia Responds To Trump Intel Disclosure: ‘Don’t Read US Newspapers’
A spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry said Tuesday that Americans should avoid reading U.S. newspapers if they want to understand what happened during a meeting between President Donald Trump and Russian officials.
Maria Zakharova described reports of Trump sharing classified information with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov as “yet another fake,” the Associated Press reported.
Zakharova also encouraged Americans to do anything with newspapers but read them.
“Guys, have you been reading American newspapers again?” she wrote on her Facebook page. “You shouldn’t read them. You can put them to various uses, but you shouldn’t read them. Lately it’s become not only harmful, but dangerous too.”
Zakharova’s remarks come in response to a bombshell report from the Washington Post, later confirmed by several other U.S. outlets, that Trump passed highly sensitive, “code word” national security information to Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak during a meeting in the Oval Office. Trump allegedly told the Russian officials about a planned ISIS plot against commercial aviation, and the location where US allies came upon this information, the Post reported. (RELATED: Trump Revealed Top-Secret Anti-ISIS Intel To Russian Officials)
The White House denied the allegations on Monday evening, with National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster issuing a carefully worded statement saying “the story that came out tonight as reported is false.”
“At no time were intelligence sources or methods discussed. The president did not disclose any military operations that were not already publicly known,” McMaster added.
Trump later acknowledged in a pair of tweets that he did in fact share information during the meeting. He said he did so on “humanitarian” grounds and mutual concerns over the threat of terrorism. The tweets appeared to contradict Zakharova’s characterization of media reports as “fake” news.
“As President I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled W.H. meeting) which I have the absolute right to do, facts pertaining to terrorism and airline flight safety,” Trump wrote Tuesday morning. “Humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against ISIS & terrorism.”
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