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U.S. Intelligence Says Russian Bounty Resulted In Death Of Multiple US Troops: WaPo

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The Washington Post reported Sunday that U.S. intelligence gathered from military interrogations indicates that Russian bounties offered to Taliban militants in Afghanistan to kill U.S. troops there resulted in the deaths of multiple US soldiers.

Multiple officials familiar with the matter told The Post it is not clear how many US troops may have been killed as a result of the bounties.

The New York Times first reported on Friday that US intelligence concluded months ago that Russian military intelligence offered the bounties, amid peace talks.

The Times report revealed that President Donald Trump was briefed on the intelligence findings and the White House’s National Security Council held a meeting about it in late March, and chose not to respond at the time.

Trump, however, has denied receiving a briefing about intelligence that Russians had tried to bribe Taliban fighters to kill US troops.

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany did not deny the validity of the report, but instead said Trump and Vice President Mike Pence were not briefed “on the alleged Russian bounty intelligence.”

The President on Sunday went a step further than the White House statement, tweeting that “there have not been many attacks” on US troops by Taliban fighters as evidence that the reported intelligence may be “phony.”

However, last year was the deadliest in five years for the US in Afghanistan, with 23 service members killed during operations in the country in 2019.

RELATED: NYT: Russia Offered Bounties To Kill US Soldiers, Trump Was Told And Did Nothing.