Sessions to recuse himself from any existing or future investigations

| Updated: Mar 03, 2017 10:11 IST

Washington D. C. [USA], Mar. 3 (ANI): Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who is presently embroiled in accusations that he misled Congress by failing to disclose pre-election meetings with the Russian ambassador to Washington Sergey Kislyak, said on Thursday that he has decided recuse himself in the investigation. In a statement issued by the United States Department of Justice, Sessions said that after several consultations, "I have decided to recuse myself from any existing or future investigations of any matters related in any way to the campaigns for President of the United States." "During the course of the confirmation proceedings on my nomination to be Attorney General, I advised the Senate Judiciary Committee that '[i]f a specific matter arose where I believed my impartiality might reasonably be questioned, I would consult with Department ethics officials regarding the most appropriate way to proceed," the statement added. "During the course of the last several weeks, I have met with the relevant senior career Department officials to discuss whether I should recuse myself from any matters arising from the campaigns for President of the United States," it said. The statement noted said that this announcement should not be interpreted as confirmation of the existence of any investigation or suggestive of the scope of any such investigation. "Consistent with the succession order for the Department of Justice, Acting Deputy Attorney General and U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia Dana Boente shall act as and perform the functions of the Attorney General with respect to any matters from which I have recused myself to the extent they exist," it said. It has emerged that Sessions spoke twice with the Russian ambassador to the United States during former's presidential campaign, according to CNN. Sessions did not mention either meeting, during his confirmation hearings when he said he knew of no contacts between Trump surrogates and Russians. A Justice official said Sessions didn't mislead senators during his confirmation. Kislyak is considered to be one of Russia's top spies and spy-recruiters in Washington by the U.S. intelligence. Sessions met with Kislyak twice in Washington, in July on the sidelines of the Republican convention, and in September in his office when Sessions was a member of the Senate Armed Services committee. Sessions was an early Trump backer and regular surrogate for him as a candidate. Sessions, a former senator from Alabama, who was among Trump's early and most vocal surrogates on the campaign trail, did not disclose the conversations when asked during his Senate confirmation hearing in early 2017 about possible contacts between Trump's campaign and Moscow. Following the accusations several Democrats demanded his resignation. (ANI)
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