Trump confirms he shared classified intel with Russia’s foreign minister

Enlarge / WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 15: National Security Adviser Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster preparing to make a statement to reporters on May 15 regarding President Trump's sharing of intelligence with Russian officials. (credit: Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

In an Oval Office meeting the day after firing FBI Director James Comey, President Donald Trump shared intelligence provided by an allied nation's sources on an Islamic State plot to bring down passenger airplanes with laptop computers turned into bombs. The intelligence, which was apparently the cause for the US extending a ban on laptops to include flights from Europe earlier this month, had been highly classified because of the sensitivity of its source.

Statements from President Trump on Twitter and from White House National Security Advisor Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster essentially confirmed these details initially reported by the Washington Post late on Monday. McMaster said that no sources or methods were exposed in the conversation. However, the unnamed officials cited in the Post report were concerned that Trump's citing of the exact location "in the Islamic State’s territory where the U.S. intelligence partner detected the threat" could expose the source. And the sharing of the classified information with Russia's foreign minister and ambassador to the United States was within Trump's purview, as the president holds the ultimate authority over classification of sensitive data and can de-classify information at will. Tuesday morning, Trump tweeted:

Trump also lashed out at the intelligence community for leaking about his actions:

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