WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Both Trump and numerous Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin, have repeatedly denied claims of alleged Moscow's collusion with the US president's campaign, as well as of the Kremlin's interference in the 2016 US election.
"I encountered and am aware of information and intelligence that revealed contacts and interactions between Russian officials and US persons involved in the Trump campaign," Brennan stated. "I don't know and cannot confirm if collusion existed."
When asked whether Trump has made any efforts to enlist the support of intelligence officials to push back on Russia collusion issue, Brennan stated, "I am unaware of it."
Brennan also said that he did not know whether Trump had tried to pressure former FBI Director James Comey to drop an investigation into ex-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
"I believe that they [Russian] will try to exploit [the midterm] elections, but they will not wait until elections," Brennan told the House Intelligence Committee.
Furthermore, Brennan claimed that Russian intelligence services are continuing to gather information on and evaluate influential individuals within the US government or who own businesses in the country.
Brennan characterized the Russian intelligence threat as a "very serious one" and suggested that US intelligence agencies should pay close attention to Moscow’s actions.
"I have unfortunately grudging respect for Russian intelligence capabilities," Brennan stated.