Jun 6, 2018

Mueller asking witnesses to hand in phones for inspection

Then-FBI Director Robert Mueller speaks during a news conference. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Special counsel Robert Mueller's team is requesting that witnesses turn in their cellphones to look at their encrypted messaging apps including WhatsApp, Confide, Signal and Dust, reports CNBC.

Why it matters: Although findings of the inspections have not been disclosed, "investigators seem to be convinced that the apps could be a key to exposing conversations that weren't previously disclosed to them," adds CNBC. This follows an accusation by federal prosecutors working for Mueller that claimed Trump's former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, attempted to tamper with witnesses. The court documents said Manafort tried to contact them by phone and through an encrypted messaging program.

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Energy deputy secretary nominee in hot water after contradicting Trump

Mark Menezes speaks at a forum in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, June 12. Photo: Minasse Wondimu Hailu/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Trump administration officials are internally raising concerns about President Trump’s nominee for Energy deputy secretary, who appeared to openly contradict the president on nuclear waste storage at Nevada’s Yucca Mountain last week.

Driving the news: While speaking at a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee hearing last Wednesday, Mark Menezes told members of the panel that the Trump administration is still interested in storing nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain and that “what we're trying to do is to put together a process that will give us a path to permanent storage at Yucca."

Exclusive: Pompeo says new China media restrictions "long overdue"

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The State Department announced Tuesday that it has designated five Chinese state media outlets as "foreign missions," meaning that they will be treated as arms of the Chinese government.

Driving the news: In his first public statement on the new designation, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tells Axios that the five outlets are "clearly controlled by the [Chinese Communist Party], and we are simply recognizing that fact by taking this action.”

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