US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has come under fire for his remarks urging Russia to break into his opponent Hillary Clinton’s emails.
At a press conference in Florida, Trump said: “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.” This was in reference to the mails that Hillary Clinton deleted from her official mail. However, she has maintained that those were all personal mails.
Clinton’s decision to delete her email also could affect the House of Representatives committee dedicated to investigating the 2012 terrorist attack on the US diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya. The Republicans have been very vocal in criticizing Clinton’s handling of the attack and feels that the emails can prove their point.
Trump’s remark comes following the publication of 20,000 emails belonging to the Democratic National Party by WikiLeaks last week. These emails revealed a smear campaigning plot against Hillary’s Democrat rival Bernie Sanders, who ultimately was forced him to resign from the DNC chairperson post.
Trump’s comments have been condemned by the Democrats and from all quarters, including social media, accusing him of treason.
— Fair and Balanced! (@The_Anti_Fox) July 27, 2016
Clinton’s senior policy advisor, Jake Sullivan said in a statement: “This has to be the first time that a major presidential candidate has actively encouraged a foreign power to conduct espionage against his political opponent. That’s not hyperbole, those are just the facts.” “This has gone from being a matter of curiosity, and a matter of politics, to being a national security issue.”
Former CIA Director Leon Panetta told CNN that Trump’s comments questions his loyalty to the US. “You’ve got now a presidential candidate who is, in fact, asking the Russians to engage in American politics. I just think that that’s beyond the pale. I think that kind of statement only reflects the fact that he truly is not qualified to be president of the United States,” he said.
If the FBI investigation determines the allegations, it could lead to serious consequences. For Trump, his comment could spell doom for his chances being the US President.
Russia has denied that it is behind the email hacking or that it is trying to interfere with the US election. It said the allegations were nothing more than ““horror stories”.
“Moscow is at pains to avoid any words that could be interpreted as direct or indirect interference in the election process,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a conference call, according toReuters.
“We see that the Russian card is in the red corner on the writing table of all Washington politicians during the election campaign, and that very often they make it a trump card in their game.”
Following the conventions of both the parties, the Republicans have chosen Donald Trump and the Democrats have picked Hillary Clinton as their US presidential candidates for November’s presidential election.
(With Agency inputs)