President Trump to allow JFK assassination files to be released

Warren Commission Exhibits 2966a and Exhibit 2966b Lee Harvey Oswald distributing

President Donald Trump said Saturday he intends to allow the release of classified government documents about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy "subject to the receipt of further information".

Politico magazine earlier quoted Trump administration and other US government officials as saying the president would nearly certainly block the release of information from some of the thousands of classified files, which the US National Archives is due to make public by an October 26 deadline.

"Subject to the receipt of further information, I will be allowing, as President, the long blocked and classified JFK FILES to be opened", Trump said, appearing to leave open the possibility that some documents could still be withheld.

Former President George H.W. Bush signed a law in 1992 that disclosed classified records relating to the assassination, except those "where the strongest possible reasons counsel otherwise".

Thousands of books, articles, TV shows, movies and documentaries have been produced about the assassination and surveys have shown that a majority of Americans still distrust official evidence that points to Lee Harvey Oswald as the sole killer. Following Kennedy's murder, more than 30,000 government documents - totaling millions of pages - have been incrementally released to the public, although many of them have been redacted or only partially released.

But Trump could have blocked the release on the grounds that making the material public would harm intelligence, law enforcement, military operations or foreign relations.

The CIA and Federal Bureau of Investigation, whose records make up the bulk of the batch, won't say whether they've appealed to the Republican president to keep them under wraps.

Even Trump has accused America of plotting his predecessor's death, telling Fox News in 2016 that he believed the father of Republican Senator Ted Cruz had consorted with Oswald right before the shooting. One per cent of the records are completely secret.

There is some doubt whether Trump will follow through with allowing the National Archives to dispense the documents in full.

Rex Bradford, president of the Mary Ferrell Foundation, which publishes assassination records, was quoted by the CBS News as saying that Kennedy experts also hope to see the full report on Oswald's trip to Mexico City from staffers of the House committee that investigated the assassination.

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