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Pentagon: Biden transition meetings with spy agencies set for early next week

Pentagon: Biden transition meetings with spy agencies set for early next week
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Meetings between officials with President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden administration still seizing land near border despite plans to stop building wall: report Olympics, climate on the agenda for Biden meeting with Japanese PM Boehner on Afghanistan: 'It's time to pull out the troops' MORE’s transition team and some military-run spy agencies are scheduled to take place early next week following reports that the Trump administration was barring the discussions. 

Pentagon spokesperson Sue Gough told The Hill on Friday that the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence & Security and the Pentagon transition director were finalizing the coordination for Defense Department intelligence agencies.

The spokesperson initially said the visits were "tentatively scheduled for early next week,” with the Pentagon following up Saturday to say the meetings are scheduled for Monday and Tuesday.

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The Biden transition team declined to provide comment when asked to confirm if the meetings were scheduled. 

News of the talks comes after a report from The Washington Post that said the Trump administration was barring transition officials from meeting with intelligence agencies that fall under the Pentagon’s purview, including the National Security Agency and the Defense Intelligence Agency.

Biden advisers have already spoken with officials at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the CIA, both of which are independent of the Defense Department. 

Transition officials were unable to meet with government staffers for days after the Biden was projected to win the White House race as the General Services Administration declined to certify the election. The body finally did so on Nov. 23.

The delay sparked criticism from Democrats and a group of Republicans who accused the administration of hindering Biden’s readiness to take office.

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The Pentagon has also been embroiled in turmoil since the election after former Pentagon chief Mark EsperMark EsperThe paradox of US-India relations Overnight Defense: Trump-era land mine policy unchanged amid review | Biden spending outline coming Friday | First lady sets priorities for relaunched military families initiative Biden to keep Trump-era land mine policy in place during review MORE was ousted in favor of current acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller, who is seen as more closely aligned with President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden administration still seizing land near border despite plans to stop building wall: report Illinois House passes bill that would mandate Asian-American history lessons in schools Overnight Defense: Administration says 'low to moderate confidence' Russia behind Afghanistan troop bounties | 'Low to medium risk' of Russia invading Ukraine in next few weeks | Intelligence leaders face sharp questions during House worldwide threats he MORE.

Gough denied that the meetings had been barred, though they are now scheduled to take place roughly a month after Biden was projected to beat Trump.

“The DOD Agency Review Team (ART) has not been denied any access. We continue to work with the DOD ART to schedule all requested interviews, briefings and updates,” she said.

Updated: Dec. 5 at 10:45 a.m.