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Despite Senate's assertion on lack of evidence, Trump 'stands by' wiretap claim

ANI  |  New York [U.S.] 

Despite several members of Congressional intelligence committees saying there is no evidence whatsoever, the has stated that has not backed down from his claims that former president wiretapped Trump Tower.

When pressed to respond whether Trump still believed Obama "wire tapped" his phones in Trump Tower in October, press secretary Sean Spicer said "he stands by it".

Spicer further argued that Trump had referred to "broad surveillance," and not a physical wiretap in his tweets earlier this month.

"There's been a vast amount of reporting, which I just detailed, about activity that was going on during the 2016 election. There's no question there were surveillance techniques used throughout this. The President has already been very clear that he didn't mean specifically wiretapping, he had it in quotes," Spicer said.

The had earlier gone on the backfoot in an attempt to change the interpretation of Trump's explosive tweets from earlier this month and in four separate statements on Twitter, Trump said he was the target of a wiretap by Obama.

"The President used the word 'wiretapped' in quotes to mean broadly surveillance and other activities during that. It is interesting how many news outlets reported that this activity was taking place during the 2016 election cycle and now are wondering where the proof is," Spicer had said.

However, in each of the four tweets Trump fired off leveling the accusation, Trump referred specifically to phone tapping -- and only used quotation marks in two of those.

Prior to Spicer's statement today, the Republican and Democratic leaders of the Senate intelligence committee said that "we see no indications that Trump Tower was the subject of surveillance by any element of the United States government either before or after Election Day 2016."

Top Republican in Congress, House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan, also agreed saying that there was no sign of a wiretap.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, March 17 2017. 05:16 IST