Sent a letter to U.S. Justice Correspondents Ellen Nakashima and Greg Miller and former correspondent Adam Andes, claiming that they had obtained their telephone records from their personal and work areas and from their phones between April 15, 2017 and July 31, 2017, the Washington Post reported.
The newspaper “was deeply disturbed by the use of government power to access the communications of journalists,” said editor-in-chief Cameron Barr.
“The judiciary must immediately shed light on the reasons for its intrusion into the actions of reporters protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution,” he continued.
The U.S. Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), for its part, said the judiciary “spied on these journalists” at the behest of a government.
“This should never have happened,” the ACLU tweeted. “When the government spies on journalists and their sources, it compromises press freedom.”
The Justice Department said it had followed “established procedures” for the request, citing a ministry spokesman, the newspaper said.
Letters to reporters did not mention why these records were seized.
But at the end of this period, all three journalists wrote an article in the US intelligence services, and Jeff Sessions, who later became attorney general under Donald Trump, discussed the post-campaign with the Russian ambassador.
Moscow has been accused of secretly supporting Donald Trump’s candidacy in 2016 in order to promote his victory.