US Attorney General Jeff Sessions to answer questions about links to Russia

Tareq Haddad

US President Donald Trump's under-fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions will answer questions about his meetings with Russia's ambassador in the run-up to last year's election, it has been confirmed.

It comes as the former senator became the latest member of Trump's administration to be shrouded with allegations of wrongdoing after his meetings with Sergey Kislyak came to light earlier this week (2 March).

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Sessions initially denied any contact with Russian officials during his Senate confirmation hearing, but has since admitted he met with Kislyak on two occasions last year.

He has since recused himself from his department's investigation into alleged Russia interference in the 2016 US presidential election.

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Some Democratic senators have now called for Sessions to be questioned again, stating that his previous answers were "incomplete and misleading".

In a letter to Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, the Republican senator for Iowa, on Friday (3 March), the nine senators called for Sessions to be hauled in for another hearing.

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Grassley has replied to say he has no plans for such hearing. Instead, Sessions has confirmed he will supply written answers to the Democrat's questions.

Trump has backed his attorney general and accused Democrats of blowing the issue out of proportion for political purposes.

"Jeff Sessions is an honest man. He did not say anything wrong. He could have stated his response more accurately, but it was clearly not intentional," Trump said, during a series of tweets.

"This whole narrative is a way of saving face for Democrats losing an election that everyone thought they were supposed to win.

"The Democrats are overplaying their hand. They lost the election, and now they have lost their grip on reality. The real story is all of the illegal leaks of classified and other information. It is a total 'witch hunt!'"

In spite of Trump's claims, the revelations about Sessions put into question statements made by the White House that it knew no further of communications between Russia and the president's inner circle at the time of former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn's resignation.

Flynn resigned on 13 February after his conversations with the Russian ambassador were made known to the public.

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