Pompeo calls Taliban leader amid Russian bounty scandal

ISLAMABAD (AP) — A Taliban spokesman says that U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has called the Taliban’s chief peace negotiator amid a roiling controversy in Washington over the Russian bounty scandal. There is much debate about when President Donald Trump was told of U.S. intelligence that Russia was paying the Taliban to kill U.S. and NATO soldiers in Afghanistan. It was not known if the bounty scandal came up in the Pompeo video call, which took place late on Monday. The call was meant to press the insurgents on reducing violence in Afghanistan and moving a U.S.-Taliban peace deal forward.