DOJ to interview CIA officers on Russian interference conclusions: Report

DOJ to interview CIA officers on Russian interference conclusions: Report
© Greg Nash

The Justice Department plans to interview senior CIA officers as part of its investigation into the origins of the Russia investigation, according to The New York Times.

CIA Director Gina HaspelGina Cheri HaspelNew book says Trump allies pushed DoD to overturn election Three key behind-the-scenes figures in Jan. 6 probe Biden says Russia spreading misinformation ahead of 2022 elections MORE has told senior officials that while the CIA plans to cooperate, it will protect information that could place sources or collection methods at risk, the newspaper reported, citing current and former American officials.

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The Department of Justice has not filed formal written requests to talk to the officers, but intelligence officials have been informed that Attorney General William BarrBill BarrThe Hill's Morning Report - US warns Kremlin, weighs more troops to Europe Jan. 6 committee chair says panel spoke to William Barr William Barr's memoir set for release in early March MORE has assigned the United States attorney in Connecticut, John H. Durham, to seek the interviews, according to the Times.

Haspel does not plan to block the interviews and has told officers it will be possible to talk with Durham without risking agency secrets.

Barr is reportedly seeking further information on how the agency concluded Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinOvernight Defense & National Security — US delivers written response to Russia Don't let Putin close his new Iron Curtain Briefing in brief: Biden committed to naming Black woman to Supreme Court MORE ordered Russian operatives to aid President TrumpDonald TrumpNorth Korea conducts potential 6th missile test in a month Kemp leading Perdue in Georgia gubernatorial primary: poll US ranked 27th least corrupt country in the world MORE’s 2016 campaign and damage that of Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe Armageddon elections to come Poll: Trump leads 2024 Republican field with DeSantis in distant second The politics of 'mind control' MORE, according to the Times, citing current and former officials.

Specifically, Barr wants more information about the CIA sources the agency relied on in analyzing Russian interference as well as the intelligence pathways between the CIA and the FBI in the summer of 2016, according to the newspaper.

One senior analyst Barr is seeking to question was involved in agency assessments of Russian activities in 2016, according to the Times, citing people familiar with the inquiry.

Durham’s inquiry is not criminal in nature, but he will have the authority to investigate criminal wrongdoing if he finds any, according to the Times.

Durham has investigated the CIA and Haspel specifically before and has twice concluded probes by exonerating agency officials.

The FBI and CIA did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.