Former Mossad chief: Israel will "think twice" before sharing sensitive info

Former Mossad chief: Israel will

As Trump prepares for his first foreign trip for the Middle East and Europe, lawmakers from both parties demanded a full accounting of the conversation with the Russian diplomats that some feared could lead to exposure of confidential informants helping US intelligence officials counter the Islamic State.

White House aides refused to say whether the information pertaining to the group's bomb-making capabilities was classified.

The sensitive intelligence was shared with the United States, officials say, on the condition that the source remain confidential.

McMaster did focus on the issue of who leaked the information to the Post.

A US official who confirmed the disclosure to The Associated Press said the revelation potentially put the source at risk.

"We had a very, very successful meeting with the foreign minister of Russia", Mr Trump said of his meeting in the Oval Office last week, with Sergei Lavrov and the Russian Ambassador to Washington. The official said the disclosure came as Trump boasted about his access to classified intelligence.

"They are in a downward spiral right now and have got to figure out a way to come to grips with all that's happening", Corker said. "I have people brief me on great intel every day".

Top White House officials evidently were aware, however, that the disclosure might constitute a misstep. Two former officials knowledgeable about the situation confirmed to CNN that the main points of the Post story are accurate.

But the press secretary said he was "pleased" with Israel's assurances of confidence in its intelligence-sharing relationship with the Trump administration.

Trump denies telling Comey to back off Flynn investigation
Next question", he said, speaking at a press conference with the Colombian president. Trump is scheduled to depart for his first foreign trip as president Friday.

While the official did not want his identity or his country named because he wasn't authorized to speak publicly about the matter, he did note that this latest news is cause for concern.

The Washington Post reported that others at the meeting realised the mistake and scrambled to "contain the damage" by informing the Central Intelligence Agency and NSA.

On January 16 and February 6, The Jerusalem Post, in an interview with former Central Intelligence Agency and NSA director Michael Hayden and other former United States and Israeli officials, reported that those concerns might be exaggerated.

Israeli officials would not confirm to The New York Times if they were the source of the information, but Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer gave no indication the report would strain the relationship between the nations.

H.R. McMaster said he was present at the meeting and that "at no time were sources or methods discussed", although the Washington Post report did not say that Trump divulged "sources or methods" to the Russians, as the Huffington Post noted.

The highly classified information which Donald Trump "shared" with Russian Federation actually came from Israel, sources told the New York Times.

The general said he wouldn't "discuss what is and what isn't classified", but "in the context of that - that - 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".

Across Capitol Hill, Republicans and Democrats alike are voicing frustration, distrust and irritation following the constant stream of controversies coming out of the White House. "That being said, I'm not going to comment any further on that", Spicer added.

A spokesman for Russia's foreign ministry has denied reports that Trump revealed classified information to the senior Russian officials, according to The Associated Press.

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