Whistleblower website WikiLeaks played a crucial role in Russia’s attempt to influence the 2016 US presidential election in favour of the later winner, Republican Donald Trump.
This is the conclusion reached by a committee of the Senate, one of the two houses of the US parliament.
WikiLeaks probably knew it was helping Russian intelligence services, the Senate committee said. The committee’s report also assumes that former Trump campaign leader Paul Manafort worked with Russians before, during and after the 2016 election.
The committee found that Manafort’s role and his proximity to Trump created opportunities for Russian espionage.
Manafort’s access to the highest levels and his willingness to share information with those closely associated with Russia’s intelligence services posed a severe threat, the report said.
The committee investigated allegations that Russia was trying to help Trump defeat Democratic rival Hillary Clinton for 3.5 years. Findings have already been published before.