Tags: Colin Powell | Condoleezza Rice | personal email

Colin Powell, Condi's Aides Got Classified Info on Personal Email

Image: Colin Powell, Condi's Aides Got Classified Info on Personal Email
(AP)

Thursday, 04 Feb 2016 04:27 PM

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell and aides to his successor Condoleezza Rice both received classified emails on personal email accounts, the top Democrat on a congressional oversight panel said on Thursday.

In a revelation following months of controversy over the emails of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton while she was secretary of state, Representative Elijah Cummings said the disclosures about Powell's and Rice's aides' emails were made by the State Department's Inspector General.

That office is reviewing the email practices of five previous secretaries of state, said Cummings, who is the ranking Democrat on the House of Representatives Oversight Committee.

In a statement, Powell said the emails in question were not judged to contain confidential information at the time they were sent to him. A representative for Rice said the emails sent to her aide did not contain intelligence information.

Powell and Rice held Washington's top diplomatic post during the administration of Republican President George W. Bush. Clinton held the post under President Barack Obama before she launched a bid for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Throughout her campaign, Clinton has struggled to put behind her questions about her use of a personal email server to conduct government business while serving as secretary from 2009 to early 2013.

Cummings said that State Department Inspector General Steve Linick on Wednesday told the department's chief management officer, Patrick Kennedy, about the alleged email practices of Powell and Rice's staffers.

In a memo, Cummings said, Linick reported the State Department determined last month that 12 emails he reviewed contained classified information. Two went to the personal email account of Powell; 10 to personal accounts used by Rice's staff.

Cummings said that none of the information in the emails was marked as classified at the time they were sent. He said the inspector general raised concerns that more classified information may also be sitting unnoticed in other unclassified State Department archives dating to the Powell and Rice eras.

Powell said both messages to him, which originated with American ambassadors, were not classified.

"The Ambassadors did not believe the contents were Confidential at the time and they were sent as unclassified. That is a fact," he said in the statement.

On Rice's behalf, Georgia Godfrey, her chief of staff at Stanford University's Hoover Institution, said the former secretary of state "did not use email as secretary nor have a personal email account. My understanding is that the report is in reference to emails sent to her assistant reporting diplomatic conversations and they contained no intelligence information."

© 2017 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
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Former Secretary of State Colin Powell and aides to his successor Condoleezza Rice both received classified emails on personal email accounts, the top Democrat on a congressional oversight panel said on Thursday.
Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, personal email
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2016-27-04
Thursday, 04 Feb 2016 04:27 PM
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