Racial slurs hurled at lawmaker after calling for Trump's impeachment

Meanwhile, Comey is set to give evidence regarding Russian meddling in the USA election in an open hearing of the Senate intelligence committee after US Memorial Day on 29 May.

"As the president has stated before - a thorough investigation will confirm that there was no collusion between the campaign and any foreign entity", said Spicer.

According to the New York Times, Trump asked Comey in that meeting to shut down the FBI's investigation into Flynn, a request Comey documented as "part of a paper trail" regarding what he saw as Trump's improper attempts to influence the probe.

"By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russia's actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russian Federation", he said.

She said subjects of the investigation could later argue that its results cannot be trusted, but she believes the argument would not stand up in court.

But it was still an open question whether Comey would appear publicly, and many lawmakers began to doubt he would testify after the Justice Department named Robert Mueller as special counsel to investigate the allegations between Russian officials and the Trump organization associates. By several senators' accounts, he contradicted Trump's statements that Rosenstein's written criticism of FBI Director James Comey had been a factor in Comey's recent firing by the president.

"The entire thing has been a witch hunt", he declared, echoing one of the tweets he'd sent out just after dawn: "This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!"

Friday, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein briefed House members on the Russian Federation investigation.

Iraq, Algeria support extension of oil production cuts
The 5.25mn barrel decline in stocks was the largest since December and brought inventories down to the lowest level for 10 weeks. Presently, the trading of oil is close to $50, and OPEC seems to lose its capability to control prices.

Trump has reacted furiously to the appointment but Democrats and even many Republicans have generally welcomed it.

"We'll get rid of the smoke and see where the actual issues lie", said Sen Tim Scott, adding: "I do think that the special prosecutor provides a sense of calm and confidence perhaps for the American people, which is incredibly important".

According to a document that summarised the meeting, Mr Trump told Mr Lavrov: "I just fired the head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation". Trump has insisted at times that the decision was his alone, but he also has pointed to the "very strong" recommendation from Rosenstein.

Wittes said Comey, who was wearing a dark blue suit, tried to "blend in with the blue curtains in the back of the room, in the hopes that Mr. Trump would not spot him and call him out".

"It does not deter us", Green said of the threats.

He says he asked career Justice Department lawyers to review the memo.

The investigation, Issa said, "includes any questions about referrals related to any misconduct, any interference and there were questions well outside the Russian scope".

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