Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Trump administration obtained phone records of journalists: Report



Trump administration obtained phone records of journalists: Report

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
US intelligence believes that Russia meddled in the 2016 election, which brought Donald Trump to power. AFP

Trump administration obtained phone records of journalists: Report

The Trump administration secretly obtained the phone records of Washington Post journalists who reported on allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election, the newspaper reported on May 7, prompting concerns over freedom of speech.

The Department of Justice sent letters to three reporters – Ellen Nakashima and Greg Miller, and former Post reporter Adam Entous – saying that it had received work, cell or home phone records "for the period from April 15, 2017 to July 31, 2017", according to the Post.

The newspaper was "deeply troubled by this use of government power to seek access to the communications of journalists", Post acting executive editor Cameron Barr was quoted as saying.

"The Department of Justice should immediately make clear its reasons for this intrusion into the activities of reporters doing their jobs, an activity protected under the First Amendment," he continued.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said the justice department had been "spying" on the journalists "at the whims of an administration".

"This should never have happened," the ACLU tweeted. "When the government spies on journalists and their sources, it jeopardizes freedom of the press."

The justice department said it had followed "established procedures" with the requests, the Post reported, citing a department spokesman.

The letters did not specify why the records were seized.

But, near the end of that period, the three wrote a story about US intelligence which suggested that Jeff Sessions, who later became attorney general under Donald Trump, had discussed the Trump campaign with the Russian ambassador.

They also wrote a story on the Obama administration's efforts to counter Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

US intelligence agencies have concluded Russia hacked into the computer servers of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) during Trump's campaign against Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

Trump has played down Russia's involvement in the DNC leak, famously appearing to side with Russian President Vladimir Putin over his own intelligence agency's assessment.

MOST VIEWED

  • Prince Norodom Ranariddh passes away at 77

    Prince Norodom Ranariddh, the second son of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk and former First Prime Minister of Cambodia, has passed away in France at the age of 77. “Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh has passed away this morning in France just after 9am Paris-time,”

  • Cambodia purchases 4 million Molnupiravir tablets

    Cambodia has arranged for the purchase of four million US-made Molnupiravir pills – enough to treat 100,000 Covid-19 patients – even though the current rate of daily infections in Cambodia remains low. The medicine will be distributed to state hospitals, pharmacies and private clinics, according to the Samdech

  • Rise in planned flights lifts travel hopes

    Six airlines have applied to resume flights in December, while two others have put in for additional flights and routes, according to State Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SSCA) head Mao Havannall on November 29. These account for 43 new weekly domestic and international flights in December, up 16

  • Is Cambodia’s travel sector in for another cheerless holiday season?

    The travel and tourism sector was heaving back to life as borders started to reopen, promising a festive vibe for the holidays and New Year. But Omicron and other Covid-related issues are threatening to close the year on a bleak note ‘Seems [like] Covid-19 won’

  • Cambodia planning new border checkpoint at Thma Da

    Cambodia is looking into the possibility of opening a new Thma Da Border Checkpoint with Thailand to boost trade and tourism. The Ministry of Public Works and Transport said on December 4 that Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol led a technical working group

  • Hun Sen: Manet to be candidate for prime minister

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has reaffirmed that his oldest son Hun Manet will be his successor as Prime Minister if he is elected. Speaking during the inauguration of a new sewage treatment facility in Preah Sihanouk province on December 2, Hun Sen said Manet will be