United States President Donald Trump had asked the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) chief James Comey to drop his investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn's Russian Federation connections, according to Washington Post reports. The details of Comey's notes of the meeting were first reported by the New York Times.
"He's a good guy".
"The Israelis who attended the meeting said that the Americans advised them not to expose any sensitive sources to members of the Trump administration, lest that information reach Iranian hands, until it becomes clear that Mr Trump does not have a compromised relationship with Russian Federation", the paper reported at the time.
Speaking at a commencement ceremony for the United States coast guard in CT, a defiant Mr Trump said that "no politician in history. has been treated worse or more unfairly" than he had, adding that he had accomplished more than any previous president in American history.
"If true, these memoranda raise questions as to whether the president attempted to influence or impede the FBI's investigation as it relates to Lieutenant General Flynn", wrote committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, a Republican.
Despite the White House denials, the latest revelations have caused a political storm in the United States, with the possibility of impeaching the president having even been mentioned.
In the new memo to have emerged, Trump asks Comey to "let this go", in reference to the FBI investigation of former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
He and other Democrats said Mr Comey must testify before lawmakers about his conversations with the president.
Kislyak was with Lavrov at the White House when Trump disclosed the sensitive information.
"We don't give intelligence supplied by one ally's service to another, unless everything has been made very clear". "The country is being tested in unprecedented ways".
Veteran Republican Senator John McCain warned that reports Trump divulged to Russian Federation information provided by a United States ally "sends a troubling signal to America's allies and partners around the world and may impair their willingness to share intelligence with us in the future".
"Working with the USA and others to deal with the terrorist threat is an important part of maintaining our national security, and we will continue to do so", she added. Conflicting comments from administration officials regarding Israel's sovereignty over Jerusalem's Western Wall have only added to the concerns.
While espionage stories and staff chaos have dominated coverage of the White House in recent weeks, Trump faces a more constant, background hazard of failing to deliver on domestic promises such as healthcare reform. More importantly, the intel had come from a USA ally - most likely Israel - that had reportedly shared it with the rider that it must not be passed on further.
"In the context of that discussion, what the president discussed with the foreign minister was wholly appropriate to that conversation and is consistent with the routine sharing of information between the president and any leaders with whom he's engaged", McMaster said.
"This is perhaps the gravest allegation of presidential misconduct in the scandal-ridden four months of the Trump administration", the blog said. "He wasn't briefed on the source and method of the information either".
Those unflattering impressions are not likely to be improved if Trump, ever the showman himself, tunes in on cable television to watch Comey starring in a hearing that keeps the rest of the country on tenterhooks.
"We had a very successful meeting with the foreign minister of Russian Federation", he told reporters firing a hail of questions at him.
Chaffetz said on Tuesday that if Comey perceived "undue influence" from the president of the United States, he had a number of options.
Trump has made little apparent effort to cement those ties as illustrated most dramatically, but far from exclusively, by Comey's abrupt dismissal.
King said he is not aware of Comey speaking to anyone in Congress about any interference in any ongoing investigations into Flynn, Russia or the Trump campaign.