‘We don’t know’ if leak is contained, NSC says of classified military documents

President Joe Biden was first briefed last week about the classified documents detailing plans of Ukraine’s spring military offensive, National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby said on Monday, but officials still do not know whether the leak has been contained.

“We don’t know. We truly don’t,” Kirby told reporters during the White House press briefing when asked whether there was an ongoing threat.

The documents, some which appeared to be doctored, began circulating online as early as March, and were recirculated in April on an array of social media sites including Discord, Twitter and Telegram.

The documents included material outlining Ukraine’s readiness, training capabilities and death tolls on the battlefield. After reviewing the documents that hit social media in April, POLITICO found that the section detailing death tolls had been altered to show a significantly higher number of Ukrainian deaths.

“We know that some of [the documents] have been doctored,” Kirby said on Monday, but noted that officials were “still working through the validity of all the documents that we know are out there.”

It’s unclear who obtained the documents and who first circulated them online. On Monday, Kirby said it was also unclear whether more documents are out there.

“We don’t know who’s behind this. We don’t know what the motive is. And … we don’t know what else might be out there,” Kirby said. “This is information that has no business in the public domain.”

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