WASHINGTON - Top Republicans in the US Congress are considering an investigation into leaks of information used by The Washington Post in an article on a covert global CIA prison system, congressional sources said yesterday.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee and House of Representatives Speaker Dennis Hastert of Illinois were "contemplating" requesting the investigation and had drafted a letter proposing such a probe, a congressional source said. The source said letters to the intelligence committees had not yet been sent.
The Washington Post reported last week that the CIA has been holding and interrogating al Qaeda captives at a secret facility in Eastern Europe, part of a covert prison system established after the September 11, 2001, attacks.
The administration has not confirmed or denied the report.
White House spokesman Scott McClellan said the administration had just learned of the congressional leaders' move for an investigation.
"The leaking of classified information is a serious matter. It ought to be taken seriously," McClellan said. "But this is a congressional prerogative and it was a decision that was made by those leaders and that's the way I would describe it."