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The inspector general also opened a separate review into whether the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation followed appropriate procedures in obtaining a secret warrant to conduct surveillance on former Trump campaign aide Carter Page in late 2016 and early 2017.

Those familiar with the report, however, told the newspaper that while Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz took issue with the individual FBI officials, his report falls short in supporting Trump's suggestion that the investigation favored Clinton.

Horowitz criticized Comey for failing to consult with Attorney General Loretta Lynch and other senior Justice Department officials before taking the unusual step in July 2016 of announcing on national TV the FBI's decision not to refer the Clinton case for prosecution.

The report criticized Comey for publicly announcing his recommendation against criminal charges for Clinton.

Likely to get the most attention by President Donald Trump and his allies are revelations of further text message exchanges between FBI official Peter Strzok - who worked on the Clinton e-mail investigation and, for a time, the probe of possible collusion between Russian Federation sources and the Trump campaign - and FBI lawyer Lisa Page. The report specifically points to Strzok's text message that suggested he would be willing to stop Trump from winning.

Rio Ferdinand backs Marcus Rashford to impress at World Cup
England beat Nigeria 2-1 at Wembley on Saturday and will face a tricky test against fellow-qualifiers Costa Rica, who reached the quarter-finals four years ago in Brazil.

Trump is certain to try to use the report to validate his firing of Comey past year, an act that is central to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into whether the president sought to obstruct justice.

The FBI obtained a warrant nine days before the presidential election to review those emails, found on the laptop of former Rep. Anthony Weiner, and ultimately determined there was nothing in them that changed its original conclusion.

Horowitz found a "troubling lack of any direct, substantive communication" between Comey and Attorney-General Lynch ahead of Comey's July 5 press conference on Clinton and his October 28 letter to Congress.

The investigation "potentially indicated or created the appearance that investigative decisions were impacted by bias or improper considerations", the inspector general wrote.

"When will people start saying, 'thank you, Mr. President, for firing James Comey?'" Trump tweeted last week, later telling reporters that when the inspector general's report is released on Thursday, it may be "a nice birthday present". "But he neglects to mention or explain the IG's finding that Comey himself used personal email for official business", Fallon posted to Twitter on Thursday.

US Reaches $1 Billion Deal With ZTE
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told CNBC this morning that the USA has struck a deal to lift sanctions on the electronics giant. Chairman Yin Yimin's letter also apologized to ZTE's 80,000 employees, according to the South China Morning Post .

The Justice Department's internal watchdog is releasing its much-anticipated report on the FBI's handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

The report calls Comey "insubordinate" and says his actions were "extraordinary". Page questioned whether Trump would become president.

John Lavinsky, a spokesman for the Office of the Inspector General, said in a statement this week that the office occasionally gives pre-release briefings to Congress and the media, adding that "for the Justice Department to brief the White House in the same manner and at the same time as the OIG briefs Congress and the press is consistent with this process". They exchanged thousands of text messages, some of which were pointedly anti-Trump. Horowitz concluded that their conduct cast a "cloud" over the investigation and that it was "antithetical to the core values of the FBI and the Department of Justice". "Thanks to IG's people for hard work".

"I hope the substance of this report was maintained throughout the entire review process", Biggs said.

Palestinians killed in protest near Gaza-Israeli border
The 23-year-old staggered back with the gas-spewing canister embedded in his cheek, his shirt bloodied, before collapsing. Workers of political parties, religious groups and human rights organisations participated in the demonstrations.