Ex-FBI Chief James Comey set to testify June 8

James Comey will testify in open session about Russia

James Comey
In this Dec. 9, 2015, file photo, FBI Director James Comey testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington before the Senate Judiciary Committee. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former FBI director James Comey is set to testify June 8 before the Senate intelligence committee investigating Russian activities during last year’s election.

The committee said Thursday that Comey will testify in an open session, which will be followed by a closed session.

The committee’s Republican chairman and senior Democrat have said members want to hear from Comey on his role in the development of the U.S. intelligence agencies’ assessment that Russia interfered in last year’s election.

They say they also hope Comey’s testimony will answer questions that have arisen since Comey’s sudden firing by President Donald Trump.

Putin: ‘Patriotic’ hackers could mount attacks

Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a meeting with heads of international news agencies at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg, Russia, Thursday, June 1, 2017. (AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky, Pool)

President Vladimir Putin says the Russian state has never been involved in hacking.

Speaking at a meeting with senior editors of leading international news agencies Thursday, Putin said that some individual “patriotic” hackers could mount some attacks amid the current cold spell in Russia’s relations with the West.

But he categorically insisted that “we don’t engage in that at the state level.”

Putin also said that “no hackers can influence election campaigns in any country of Europe, Asia or America.”

U.S. intelligence agencies have accused Russia of hacking into Democratic Party emails, helping President Donald Trump’s election victory.