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The New York Times was the first to report on Tuesday about the discussion between Comey and Trump in February and the subsequent memo.

Revelations that President Donald Trump asked then-FBI Director James Comey to end an investigation before firing him have sparked a debate about whether or not Trump's actions were an obstruction of justice.

Reporters pressed the Colombian president to comment on Trump's "America First" policy and the proposed southern border wall, but Santos sidestepped controversy by praising cooperation with the U.S. in ending the decades-long conflict in his country. "It's a bit premature to be talking about impeachment", he said in an interview. "There is no collusion between certainly myself and my campaign". At a news conference Wednesday, Putin offered to provide a transcript of the conversation and said the U.S.is showing "political schizophrenia".

"I think it is totally ridiculous", Trump said.

When news broke this week of the Comey memo on Trump's alleged interference in the Flynn investigation, Fox News commentator Charles Krauthammer said he found it "really stunning that nobody, not even from the White House, has come out under their own name in defense of the president here". The Justice Department declined to comment.

The 18 calls and electronic messages took place between April and November 2016 as hackers engaged in what US intelligence concluded in January was part of a Kremlin campaign to discredit the vote and influence the outcome of the election in favour of Trump over his Democratic challenger, former secretary of state Hillary Clinton.

Kislyak was with Lavrov at the White House when Trump disclosed the sensitive information.

We don't yet know how straight the line is from the FBI's investigation to Comey's dismissal, though Trump did indicate last week that the Russian Federation investigation played a role in his decision. Mr Trump has long bristled at the notion that Russian Federation played any role in his November election victory over Mrs Clinton. He is also, he says, a friend of James Comey, and he spoke with the PBS NewsHour Wednesday about a series of conversations he had with the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director regarding Comey's interactions with the president.

A lawyer for fired National Security Adviser Michael Flynn has informed the Senate Intelligence Committee he will not honor its subpoena for private documents. "I say to all of my colleagues in the Senate, history is watching", said top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer.

As unrelenting shockers keep streaming in from the White House, one more has a senior Trump administration official on the record, saying, "I don't see how Trump isn't completely f-ed". The memo has not been made available to the public.

Trump said later, however, that he had been thinking about "this Russian Federation thing" when he fired Comey, whom he called a "showboat" and a "grandstander" in an interview with NBC's Lester Holt last Thursday. A key issue Mr Mueller may have to tackle is whether Mr Trump has committed obstruction of justice, an offense that could be used in any effort in the Republican-led Congress to impeach him and remove him from office.


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