Sessions asks China for answers on think tank cyberattack

Sessions asks China for answers on think tank cyberattack
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Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsUnder pressure, Trump shifts blame for Russia intrusion Overnight Tech: Judge blocks AT&T request for DOJ communications | Facebook VP apologizes for tweets about Mueller probe | Tech wants Treasury to fight EU tax proposal Overnight Regulation: Trump to take steps to ban bump stocks | Trump eases rules on insurance sold outside of ObamaCare | FCC to officially rescind net neutrality Thursday | Obama EPA chief: Reg rollback won't stand MORE confronted Chinese government officials last week about an alleged cyberattack after a think tank's website crashed earlier this week.

Sessions confronted Chinese officials on Wednesday after the Hudson Institute said their website was compromised before the organization was scheduled to host an event with an exiled critic of the Communist Party of China, a Justice Department spokesperson told The Wall Street Journal. 

A Justice Department spokesman told the publication that China has "pledged to cooperate." 

The conservative institute had allegedly foiled an attack originating from Shanghai days earlier that was aimed at shutting its website down, a spokesman told the Journal.

The spokesman told the publication the website's problems were a result of maintenance issues, however a Wednesday event with Guo Wengui was cancelled. 

Chinese officials denied responsibility for the alleged cyberattacks in comments published by Reuters on Sunday. 

The Ministry of Public Security said in a statement to the publication that a probe found "no evidence" of Chinese involvement in the attacks, and charged that Guo had fabricated documents pointing to participation from the Chinese government. 

“The falsified official documents and the false information he fabricated are sensational and outrageous,” the statement said. 

Guo, who has been a frequent and vocal critic of the Chinese government in the past, applied for asylum in the U.S. in September. 

He also claimed this week that the law firm that previously represented him, Clark Hill PLC, had backed out of representing him after being targeted by Chinese hackers.