Trump's top lawyer in Russia probe quits

The decision came as US President Donald Trump's lead lawyer for the federal special counsel probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election resigned on Thursday, the New York Times reported, citing two people familiar with the matter.

John Dowd stepped down after concluding Mr Trump was increasingly ignoring his advice, one of the people said, according to the Times.

The US House Intelligence Committee has also voted to release a Republican report on the panel's Russia probe, the leader of the investigation says, a decision that formally ends the panel's examination of Russia and the 2016 US election.

Republican Representative Mike Conaway said on Thursday the committee approved the release. He and other committee members declined to give a tally of the vote.

The report will not be made public until intelligence agencies review it to determine what can be declassified. Democrats plan their own report.

Representative Adam Schiff, the panel's top Democrat, told reporters after the committee business meeting that Republicans had declined every motion offered by Democrats, including requests to subpoena witnesses who refused to answer questions.

"The [Republican] majority was not interested in conducting any further investigation, even when the flaws in what we have done so far have become so apparent in the course of the last week," Schiff said.

Reports have emerged from a whistleblower this week that British political consultancy Cambridge Analytica improperly accessed Facebook users' information to build profiles on American voters later used to help elect Mr Trump in 2016.

Hidden camera footage released by British television showed a company official criticising how the House committee had conducted its interview.

Mr Trump's fellow Republicans have majorities in both the Senate and House, controlling every congressional committee. The House panel's investigation of how Russia might have sought to influence the 2016 US Presidential election, and whether Mr Trump associates colluded with Moscow has, has been marked by partisan disagreements for months.

Mr Trump has repeatedly denied collusion with Russia and Moscow denies meddling in the 2016 US campaign.

Reuters / Newshub.