Subpoenas issued for two Trump figures in Congress Russia probe

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Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn will provide documents to the Senate intelligence committee as part of its probe into Russia's meddling in the 2016 election, The Associated Press has learned. Mueller's separate probe could conceivably look at the circumstances surrounding Comey's firing. Mr. Nunes remains the chairman of the committee but recused himself from the Russian Federation inquiry.

Flynn had previously invoked his Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination in declining an earlier subpoena from the committee, which sought a wide array of documents and information related to his contacts with Russian Federation.

But committee aides confirmed that three other subpoenas were sent to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the NSA for information related to the unmasking of Trump campaign officials.

Those subpoenas were reportedly issued exclusively by Republican Rep. Devin Nunes, the committee chairman, with no input from Democrats.

Conaway took charge of the investigation after Chair Devin Nunes (R-California) stepped down from the probe in early April due to accusations filed against him with the Office of Congressional Ethics. "Any prior requests for information would have been undertaken without the minority's knowledge", said a senior Democratic committee aide.

Their identities are supposed to be "masked" or hidden in collection reports, unless an official requests that it be "unmasked" or revealed in order to understand the intelligence.

One of the least-discussed aspects of the current scandal enveloping the Trump administration over Russian contact is that Russia nearly inarguably at this point engaged in an act of information warfare.

The Comey associate, who wasn't authorized to discuss details of the testimony and spoke on condition of anonymity, declined to discuss the content of Comey's planned testimony. Officials in the White House or Congress can request that an agency "unmask" the masked identities-revealing the US person or organization that was being talked to or talked about-to help them better understand the intelligence.

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The House intelligence committee said Wednesday it is issuing subpoenas for former national security adviser Michael Flynn and President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, as well as their businesses, as part of its investigation into Russian activities during last year's election.

Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the panel, said Thursday that Nunes had clearly violated the terms of his recusal and it would be up to House Speaker Paul Ryan to enforce the recusal.

"The big story is the "unmasking and surveillance" of people that took place during the Obama administration", Trump said in a tweet on Thursday.

Trump on Thursday backed Nunes' efforts to investigate actions by US security and other officials who had served under previous President Barack Obama.

"I only learned about this late the night before, and that's a problem", Schiff told Mitchell. President Trump has argued that the leaks should be the focus of the investigation.

Separately, the Washington Post reported that the Trump administration was moving toward returning two Russian compounds in the United States to Moscow.

Schiff said on CNN Thursday of Nunes' new subpoenas: "I have to conclude this is part of the White House effort to direct attention in another direction" as the Russian Federation probe intensifies.

CNN reported on Wednesday night that congressional investigators were looking into whether Attorney General Jeff Sessions had an undisclosed private meeting with Kislyak during the campaign, citing Republican and Democratic sources in Congress and intelligence officials briefed on the probe.