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Coats says spy agencies to cooperate with Barr

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Trump and the Russia investigation (all times local):

3:40 p.m.

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats says the nation’s spy agencies will provide the Justice Department all appropriate information for its review of intelligence activities related to Russian interference in the 2016 election.

President Donald Trump claims his campaign was the victim of “spying” and has given Attorney General William Barr full authority to publicly disclose still-secret information collected during the investigation.

Some former intelligence officials and Democrats worry that Barr will cherry-pick intelligence to paint a misleading picture about the roots of the probe.

In a statement released Friday, Coats said he’s confident that Barr will work with “long-established standards to protect highly sensitive, classified information that, if publicly released,” would put U.S. national security at risk.

___

12:40 p.m.

President Trump says he will declassify documents related to the origins of the investigation into Russia’s links to the campaign.

Trump, leaving the White House on Friday for Japan, told reporters that the investigation was “an attempted coup.”

The president said it could run up to “millions of pages” and said he wanted to declassify FBI and CIA documents, including those that might pertain to contacts overseas in the United Kingdom.

Trump’s comments come a day after he granted Attorney General William Barr new powers to review and potentially release classified information.

The president ordered the U.S. intelligence community to “quickly and fully cooperate” with Barr’s investigation into the origins of the Russia probe.

Trump said Barr is “in charge” and “let’s see what he finds.”

___

12:05 a.m.

President Donald Trump is stepping up his effort “to investigate the investigators.” He directed the U.S. intelligence community on Thursday to “quickly and fully cooperate” with Attorney General William Barr’s investigation of the origins of the multi-year probe of whether his 2016 campaign colluded with Russia.

The move marked another effort in Trump’s efforts to undermine the findings of special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe amid mounting Democratic calls to bring impeachment proceedings against Trump.

Press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement that Trump is delegating to Barr the “full and complete authority” to declassify documents relating to the probe.


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