James Comey requested Russian probe funds from Rod Rosenstein - who then recommended his firing

Richard Nixon's most senior adviser, Henry Kissinger, backed the Trump decision.

'Was he fired? You're kidding': Russia foreign minister Sergei Lavrov reacts to James Comey sackingReuters

FBI Director James Comey asked for more money to resource the bureau's investigation into Russian interference in the US election days before he was summarily dismissed by President Donald Trump.

The New York Times, Washington Post and Associated Press have all said that those with knowledge of the request confirmed that Comey had asked Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein for more resources last week.

IBTimes UK reached out to the Department of Justice along with the chairs of the Senate Intelligence Committee who were reportedly informed of the request but did not receive replies by the time of publication.

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It was on Rosenstein and Attorney General Jeff Session's recommendation that Trump said he had made the decision to fire Comey. In a letter entitled 'Restoring Public Confidence in the FBI', Rosenstein said that the bureau's "reputation and credibility have suffered substantial damage" in the last year, before saying that "the Director made serious mistake" in his handling of the investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server.

"The way the Director handled the conclusion of the email investigation was wrong." Rosenstein said. "As a result, the FBI is unlikely to regain public and congressional trust until it has a Director who understands the gravity of the mistakes and pledges never to repeat them."

Trump defended his decision , asserting in a flurry of tweets that both Democrats and Republicans "will be thanking me" for his action. He did not mention any effect the dismissal might have on the FBI and congressional investigations into contacts between his 2016 election campaign and Russia.

Speaking briefly alongside Henry Kissinger, Secretary of State under disgraced President Richard Nixon, Trump said that Comey was fired because he "was not doing a good job."

Comey, 56, was nominated by President Barack Obama for the FBI post in 2013 to a 10-year term, though that appointment does not ensure a director will serve the full term.

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