Mueller to testify before US House panels on July 17

Published: June 26, 2019 13:21:56 | Updated: July 10, 2019 15:35:21

US Special Counsel Robert Mueller makes a statement on his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election at the Justice Department in Washington, US, on May 29, 2019 — Reuters photo

US Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who issued a report in April on Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, will testify in open session before the House of Representatives Judiciary and Intelligence Committees on July 17, the panels’ Democratic chairmen said on Tuesday.

Representative Jerrold Nadler, chairman of the judiciary panel, and Representative Adam Schiff, head of the intelligence panel, said in a joint statement that Mueller had agreed to testify after the two committees issued subpoenas on Tuesday, reports Reuters.

A representative for Mueller did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Mueller’s 448-page report, released publicly in April, found Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election and that Republican President Donald Trump’s election campaign had multiple contacts with Russian officials.

But the report found insufficient evidence to establish a criminal conspiracy between the campaign and Moscow.

The report, which was partially redacted, also outlined instances in which Trump tried to interfere with Mueller’s investigation, but declined to make a judgment on whether that amounted to obstruction of justice.

Mueller, in his first public comments since starting the two-year investigation, said on May 29 that his probe was never going to end with criminal charges against Trump and indicated it was up to Congress to decide whether he should be impeached.

“If we had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so,” Mueller said. “We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime.”

Attorney General William Barr said there was insufficient evidence in Mueller’s report to conclude that Trump obstructed justice.

Trump says the report was a complete exoneration from what he called a witch hunt mounted by Democrats frustrated by his 2016 election victory.

But some Democrats have said the president should be removed from office through impeachment proceedings because of Mueller’s findings.

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