February 25, 2018

Main » Russian spy chiefs met in Washington with Central Intelligence Agency director to discuss counterterrorism

Russian spy chiefs met in Washington with Central Intelligence Agency director to discuss counterterrorism

03 February 2018

He said the fact that it was disclosed by Russian authorities is evidence that Moscow wants to boast that sanctioned officials can travel into the United States.

Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service Sergey Naryshkin attends a farewell ceremony for Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov at the Russian Foreign Ministry on December 22, 2016 in Moscow. It says anti-Russian hysteria is sweeping through the United States and Europe.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo on Thursday defended his decision to meet with officials from the Russian intelligence service last week, arguing that there was nothing "untoward" about the meeting.

In a tweet, Russia's embassy in Washington acknowledged the visit, citing the official ITAR-Tass news agency: "Sergey Naryshkin has visited the United States for consultations with #US counterparts on the struggle against terrorism".

In a letter to Schumer Thursday, Pompeo explained that he meets regularly with his Russian counterparts to discuss cooperation on terrorism, returning jihadi fighters and other threats.

Naryshkin's trip to the United States raised concerns among some USA senators.

Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer in a letter on Tuesday called on intelligence leaders to explain these meetings given their own assessment that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 election.

"A US meeting with the chief of the SVR a little more than a year after our Intelligence Community unanimously concluded that interfered in the 2016 USA election raises a number important questions", Mr. Schumer wrote.

In the interview, Pompeo also repeated his message that North Korea was close to developing missiles which could be used in a nuclear attack on the United States.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., a frequent critic of Trump's treatment of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his government, said the timing of the trip was suspicious. The White House is discussing whether to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo, two White House officials said.

Moscow denies the conclusions of USA intelligence agencies that it led a hacking campaign of political party networks and spread disinformation to help Trump in his presidential campaign. "Director Pompeo's refusal to answer that question is deeply troubling".

President Trump has called many times for reconciliation with Russian Federation, arguing that the country is an essential partner to addressing security challenges in Iran, North Korea and elsewhere.

The CIA released a statement saying that while it does not discuss the schedules of US intelligence leaders, "rest assured that any interaction with foreign intelligence agencies would have been conducted in accordance with USA law and in consultation with appropriate departments and agencies".

He was banned from entering the United States, but sanctions experts said there are processes for providing people under sanction permission to enter for official business. The United States and Russian Federation do occasionally share information about threats to each other's countries, but it is not a robust process and doesn't compare to the close cooperation the United States has with its Western allies.

Pompeo said he is concerned by Russia's subversion tactics, just as European countries are.

Some intelligence officers have said they see a disconnect between the administration's desire for rapprochement and public statements from intelligence leaders that Russian Federation will continue to try to disrupt the US democratic process.

A Central Intelligence Agency spokesman said there was nothing to see here.

Russian spy chiefs met in Washington with Central Intelligence Agency director to discuss counterterrorism