In our news wrap Friday, President Trump warned he might continue to revoke security clearances. In his sights is Bruce Ohr, a current official at the U.S. Department of Justice. Ohr had contacts with the former British agent who compiled an infamous "dossier" on the president's Russia ties. Also, President Trump again defended former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, calling him "a good man."
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President Trump says a current U.S. Justice Department official may be next to lose his security clearance.
Bruce Ohr had contacts with a former British agent who compiled a dossier on Mr. Trump's ties to Russia. That was during the 2016 campaign. The agent was hired by the a political research firm where Ohr's wife worked for a time.
Today, as he left Washington for the weekend, the president brought up Ohr's security clearance.
President Donald Trump:
I think Bruce Ohr is a disgrace. I suspect I will be taking it away very quickly. I think that Bruce Ohr is a disgrace with his wife, Nellie. For him to be in the Justice Department and to be doing what he did, that is a disgrace.
Mr. Trump already revoked the clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan. He said today that decision got what he called a tremendous response.
But last night, 13 former high-ranking intelligence officials of both political parties denounced it as a clear attempt to stifle free speech. And today 60 former CIA officers and analysts signed a letter of their own saying former officials should be able to speak freely — quote — "without fear of being punished."
The president also defended again his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort as a good man. A federal jury in Alexandria, Virginia, is in the midst of deliberating on bank and tax fraud charges against Manafort. They will resume on Monday. Mr. Trump wouldn't say whether he would pardon Manafort if he's convicted.
A dispute between the U.S. and Turkey heated up again today. President Trump warned of new action after a Turkish court refused to free an American pastor being held on terror charges. This follows the U.S. imposing higher tariffs on important Turkish metals this month. But Turkey's trade minister is arguing the Trump policy is misguided,
Rushsar Pekcan (through translator):
We are witnessing the United States mixing political issues and economic cooperation issues without regard to sensitivity. And this not only is negatively affecting growth of the American economy, but also the global economy.
Today's renewed tensions sent Turkey's currency, the lira, down again. It's lost nearly 40 percent of its value against the dollar this year.
The U.S. has slapped new financial and travel sanctions on Myanmar's security forces over a violent campaign against Rohingya Muslims. Today's announcement accused the Buddhist nation's military of massacres, rape and other abuses. It targeted two military army units and four commanders. More than 700,000 Rohingya have fled to neighboring Bangladesh in the past year.
The State Department says it's redirecting $230 million meant for postwar stabilization efforts in Syria. The money had been frozen and under review since last march. A State Department spokeswoman said the cut was offset by increased contributions from coalition partners in the fight against the Islamic State and she insisted the U.S. wasn't lessening its commitments in Syria.
Iraq's military says that it killed 28 Islamic State militants in a pair of airstrikes inside Syria yesterday. The targets were near the Iraqi border. Security officials say one of the strikes targeted a gathering of would-be suicide bombers who planned to attack Iraq next week.
In Genoa, Italy, officials now say five people are still missing after a deadly bridge collapse; 38 people are known dead as a result of Tuesday's disaster. Funerals began today at the town's convention center.
Genoa's Roman Catholic bishop said the city is struggling.
Bishop Nicolo Anselmi (through translator):
This bridge belonged to our everyday life for us Genoese. We would cross it every day, as it used to link the two parts of the city. Today, for example, I went to buy the newspaper, went to church to pray, to a coffee shop with a friend, and everybody talks about what happened. So, it really is a wound for the whole community, because it is a part of us.
A state funeral for the victims is scheduled for Saturday.
Back in this country, the Pentagon says there will not be a military parade in Washington, D.C., this fall, as President Trump had called for, after all. Last night's announcement followed controversy over the idea and reports that the parade could cost more than $90 million, three times the initial estimate. In a tweet today, President Trump criticized what he called ridiculously high costs. And he blamed city officials in Washington, who responded by calling his charge outrageous.
On Wall Street today, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 110 points to close at 25,669. The Nasdaq rose 10 points to close at 7816. And the S&P 500 added nine points to close at 2850.
Still to come on the "NewsHour", why hundreds of immigrant children are still separated from their families; Pennsylvania Catholic Church leaders speak out about allegations of systematic sexual abuse; what's at stake if the U.K. cannot make a Brexit deal; and much more.