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White House Staff Reportedly Told To Keep Documents On Russia-Trump Contacts

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (file photo)

News media in the United States are reporting that White House attorneys have instructed President Donald Trump's staff to preserve materials that could be connected to Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The AP and Reuters news agencies on March 1 cited anonymous administration officials as saying a memo was sent to White House staff on February 28 after Senate Democrats asked the White House to keep all materials documenting contacts that Trump employees had with Russian government officials or their associates.

The Senate Intelligence Committee made a similar request to the White House.

The FBI has been investigating contacts between Trump advisers and Russia, while congressional committees are investigating Russia's role in political hacking during the campaign.

Congressional staffers say they have no evidence that materials related to Russia are not being preserved. But Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said last week: "There is real concern that some in the administration may try to cover up [their] ties to Russia by deleting emails, texts, and other records that could shine a light on those connections."

The intelligence community has concluded that Russia leaked hacked Democratic documents last year to help Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Russia and the White House have denied the allegations.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters