Overnight saw one of the closest intelligence-sharing partnerships tested as never before in the fight against global terrorism, as Prime Minister Theresa May confronted President Donald Trump over U.S. media leaks from the Manchester bombing probe.
As Bloomberg reports, police investigating the suicide bombing that killed 22 people at a pop concert in the city in northern England have suspended sharing information with the U.S., according to a report by the security correspondent of the BBC.
"I will make clear to President Trump that the information shared between our law-enforcement agencies must remain secure," May told reporters.
U.K. police said late Wednesday that leaks to American media amounted to a breach of trust and undermined their investigation into the attack, stepping up criticism earlier from Home Secretary Amber Rudd.
The BBC reported that U.K. officials were furious about a story in the New York Times on Wednesday that included photos of the crime scene. The story didn’t cite a source, and neither the U.K. government nor police commented on the piece.
A senior White House official said that the leaks only underscored the president’s assertion that U.S. authorities should investigate the intelligence community to see who is doing the leaking. The source pointed out that the BBC report specified that the U.S. law officials were the source of the leaks — not the White House.
“These leaks were reprehensible, deeply distressing, we unequivocally condemn them,” U.S. acting ambassador in London, Lewis Lukens, said on BBC Radio.
“The U.S. government is launching an investigation into these leaks and will take appropriate action if they are in the U.S.”
Trump was also clearly angered also and made a statement this morning regarding the leaks..
The alleged leaks coming out of government agencies are deeply troubling. These leaks have been going on for a long time and my Administration will get to the bottom of this. The leaks of sensitive information pose a grave threat to our national security.
I am asking the Department of Justice and other relevant agencies to launch a complete review of this matter, and if appropriate, the culprit should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
There is no relationship we cherish more than the Special Relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom.
Is this the final straw that breaks the camel's back and enables Trump to really clean house? One can only hope…
The question is – without their leaker-in-chief, how will NYT, WaPo, CNN et al. actualy cover The White House?