Pence: US will ‘use the full force of the law’ on WikiLeaks if CIA leak legit

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Vice President Pence on Thursday vowed that the Trump administration would “use the full force of the law” to go after those involved in WikiLeaks’s latest document dump if the materials it released are shown to be valid CIA documents.

“Trafficking in national security information, as is alleged WikiLeaks has done here, is a very serious offense,” Pence said during an interview on Fox News’s “Special Report.”

“It represents a compromise of the security of the American people,” he said.

“This president and this administration will take that very seriously and use the full force of the law and resources of the United States to hold all of those to account that were involved,” he added.

{mosads}”If proven to be true and confirmed publicly, I can assure you that no resource will be spared in holding those [to] account that have leaked information that could well constitute a compromise of methods and a compromise of national security.”

Republican Sen. Ben Sasse (Neb.) pressed Attorney General Jeff Sessions in a letter earlier Thursday on whether the Trump administration would prosecute WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after the White House referred questions to him.

“Does the Department of Justice believe Julian Assange has broken the law and is the Department aggressively pursuing his detention and prosecution?” Sasse asked Sessions.

WikiLeaks on Tuesday released a massive trove of documents that it claims details the CIA’s hacking and surveillance programs. The cache contained descriptions of hacking tools, engineering notes, internal communications and the redacted names of agents.

WikiLeaks said the leak was the first of many it has coming that will deal with the CIA and its operations.

The FBI and CIA announced Wednesday that they will collaborate on a joint probe of the documents’ release, focusing on how WikiLeaks obtained the materials and whether they came from an employee or contractor.

The CIA has insisted it never engaged in illegal, unconstitutional or unethical behavior detailed in the documents, which it declined to validate as authentic.

“It is CIA’s job to innovative, cutting-edge, and the first line of defense in protecting this country from enemies abroad,” it said in a statement. “America deserves nothing less.”

“The American public should be deeply troubled by any WikiLeaks disclosure designed to damage the Intelligence Community’s ability to protect America against terrorists and other adversaries.”

Assange said Thursday his organization would also give technology companies access to hacking tools.

“We have decided to work with them,” he said during an online press conference. “To give them some exclusive access to some of the technical details we have, so that fixes can be pushed out.

“[The CIA] has lost control of its entire cyber weapons arsenal. This is a historic act of devastating incompetence to have created such an arsenal and store it all in one place and not secure it.”

Tags Central Intelligence Agency CIA Intelligence Jeff Sessions leaks National security spying Wikileaks

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