Donald Trump warned ousted FBI Director James Comey on Friday not to talk to the media, a highly unusual move that prompted fresh charges the president is trying to silence the man who led an investigation into possible collusion between Trump’s election campaign and Russia. On Twitter, Trump appeared to suggest that if Comey gave his version of contacts between them, the administration might produce tapes of conversations, although it was not clear if such tapes exist. The veiled threat added to the storm over Trump’s abrupt firing of Comey on Tuesday. Critics have assailed Trump for dismissing the FBI chief at a time when the agency is investigating alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election, and possible Moscow ties to the Trump presidential campaign.
The White House said Thursday that removing FBI Director James Comey from his post may hasten the agency’s investigation into Russian meddling. “We want this to come to its conclusion, we want it to come to its conclusion with integrity”, said deputy press secretary Sarah Sanders, referring to the FBI’s probe into Moscow’s interference in last year’s election. “And we think that we’ve actually, by removing Director Comey, taken steps to make that happen”.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has been investigating an Islamic State Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) cell known as the “Dokumacılar” since a suicide attack killed two U.S. citizens and two others on Istanbul’s İstiklal Avenue on March 19, 2016, according to revelations from a case file at the Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office. Five suspects from the attack were put on trial by the Istanbul 23rd Court of Serious Crimes in connection with the attack.
According to an anonymous source in the White House the Chief of Staff of the President Trump, Rience Priebus, would meet the Deputy Director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, to convince him to contest the media claims about the frequent and repeated contacts between the managers of the Trump campaign and of Russian intelligence agents. The operation carried out by Priebus was strongly criticized by the Democrats, in particularly the Deputy John Conyers of Michigan, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, has declared that “the White House can not afford to put pressure to FBI to make public statements on a pending investigation that involves the President and his advisers”. The White House downplayed the incident saying that contacts between Priebus and McCabe were perfectly regular and that there was no attempt to put pressure to FBI.
James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence, John Brennan, the CIA Director, and James Comey, FBI Directorate are ready to meet in New York with President-elect Trump to discuss the events related to the alleged manipulation of the presidential election in November by Russian agents. President Obama has already met the three directors on Tuesday. While the press expects a declassified version of the Intelligence, reports are followed by a series of rumors that Trump would choose Dan Coats as the new Director of National Intelligence. Coats is certainly not a friend of Moscow: he was one of the supporters of sanctions against Russia following the annexation of the Crimea in 2014. Furthermore, some of the media, including the prestigious Wall Street Journal, launched the rumor that Trump would have in mind a reform of the Intelligence services. The news was denied by the spokesman of the President-elect.
The FBI confirmed that they found no evidence about a possible terrorist attack on the Los Angeles subway. On Tuesday the city authorities ordered an increase of security measures on the red line metro after an anonymous call, made by an Australian phone line, warned that there would be an attack on the Universal metro station. The increased security measures are still operating as a precaution.