Trump denies briefing on reported bounties against US troops


The Washington Post quoting USA sources said the bounties "have resulted in the deaths of several U.S. service members, according to intelligence gleaned from United States military interrogations of captured militants in recent months", but it didn't specify this number.

One incident under review was an April 2019 attack by the Taliban on an American convoy that killed three USA marines, the AP said, citing unidentified sources.

In response to the report, Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, said that "These kinds of deals with the Russian intelligence agency are baseless - our target killings and assassinations were ongoing in years before, and we did it on our own resources".

The Director of National Intelligence also mentioned that Trump and Vice President Mike Pence were not briefed and called the Times report, not accurate.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a member of the "Gang of Eight" congressional leaders briefed on sensitive intelligence matters, told ABC's "This Week" that she had not been been informed about the reported bounties and requested a report to Congress on the matter.

U.S. Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said at a news conference in NY on Sunday that the report showed the need for tough sanctions against Russian Federation in the defense bill that the Senate will debate this week.

Subsequently, the National security Council of the White house have discussed the issue at a meeting in March.

"If the reports are true, that the administration knew about this Russian operation and did nothing, they have broken the trust of those who serve and the commitment to their families to ensure their loved one's safety", he said in a prepared statement. He added, "Nobody's been tougher on Russian Federation than the Trump administration".

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Citing the officials with knowledge on the matter but the US took no evident action.

The Taliban said home-made explosives accounted for most of the casualties among USA forces.

Russian Federation also denounced the report, with its embassy in Washington tweeting that the "baseless and anonymous accusations" in the Times story had "already led to direct threats to the life of employees" at its embassies in Washington and London.

The report said the Russians offered rewards for successful attacks past year, at a time when Washington and the Taliban were holding talks to end the long-running war.

Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., said the White House needs to explain what it has done to hold Putin accountable for the bounties.

The New York Times and the Associated Press news agency also reported U.S. military and intelligence officials were reviewing past casualties to see whether they were tied to Moscow's alleged payments.

Former President Barack Obama and other customers of the Team of 8 industrialized nations ousted Russian Federation from the association in 2014 next Putin's unlawful annexation of Crimea.