Testimony by intelligence chiefs on global threats highlights differences with president

Christopher Davidson
January 30, 2019

On Tuesday, a new US intelligence assessment of global threats concluded that North Korea is 'unlikely to completely give up its nuclear weapons and production capabilities'.

As for Iran, Central Intelligence Agency director Gina Haspel told the hearing that the country is still abiding by the terms of the 2015 nuclear deal despite Trump's decision to withdraw previous year, claiming Tehran had broken it.

"Therefore, the second summit's agreement must include the point that complete denuclearization of North Korea, along with security guarantees for the North, are the ultimate objective both sides are seeking", the expert said.

Ahead of a planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un next month, President Donald Trump has been keen to tout Kim's vague promises of denuclearization as progress towards peace on the Korean peninsula.

The report also said the Islamic State group "remains a terrorist and insurgent threat" inside Iraq.

Negotiations between the United States and North Korea, however, have shown little sign of moving forward against the backdrop of the Trump administration's skepticism about Pyongyang's commitment to give up its nuclear weapons.

"We assess that foreign actors will view the 2020 USA elections as an opportunity to advance their interests", Coats said.

As a part of the deal, the Russian government would operate the plant and transfer all by-products and waste back to Russia, reducing the risk that North Korea uses the power plant to build nuclear weapons while providing the impoverished country a new energy source.

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The officials painted a multifaceted picture of the threat posed by China, as they were questioned repeatedly by senators about the No. 2 world economy's business practices as well as its growing global influence.

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency Director Gina Haspel, and Federal Bureau of Investigation Director Christopher Wray were also there.

Tuesday's testimony came just a day after the United States announced criminal charges against China's Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, escalating a fight with the world's biggest telecommunications equipment maker and coming days before trade talks between Washington and Beijing.

He said Russia's social media efforts will continue to focus on aggravating social and racial tensions, undermining trust in authorities and criticizing politicians perceived to be anti-Russia.

On political interference, the written assessment added that intelligence analysts expect American adversaries "to refine their capabilities and add new tactics as they learn from each other's experiences, suggesting the threat landscape could look very different in 2020 and future elections".

His comments come as the Justice Department on Monday charged China's Huawei Technologies, the world's largest telecom company, for stealing USA technology and for violating US sanctions policy aimed at Iran.

Coats declined to respond when Sen.

Russian Federation denies attempting to influence United States elections, while Trump has denied his campaign cooperated with Moscow, repeatedly calling the Mueller investigation a "witch-hunt". The Democratic National Committee circulated a memo Tuesday evening noting multiple press accounts of how the intelligence chiefs "contradicted" the president.

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