WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department's watchdog found no evidence the FBI intentionally destroyed text messages of two former FBI officials involved in the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

Instead, the inspector general faulted an FBI-wide software failure that has resulted in large portions of FBI text messages not being archived.

Thursday's report examines a gap in messages from December 2016 through May 2017 from the phones of former FBI agent Peter Strzok (struhk) and ex-FBI lawyer Lisa Page. The FBI ultimately managed to recover thousands of the messages.

Some congressional Republicans had suggested the messages were intentionally deleted. The inspector general report says there's no evidence Strzok and Page circumvented protocol.

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Strzok was removed from special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation after anti-Trump texts were discovered. He has since been fired. Page resigned.