At least 1,666 emails that Hillary Clinton sent or received contained classified material, according to the State Department’s latest update from its ongoing review of more than 30,000 emails.
The State Department released a new batch of 1,012 pages of Clinton’s emails Saturday afternoon in response to a court order. Of those, 84 contain classified information. Most are at the confidential level, which is the lowest level of classification, though three are at the secret level.
None of Clinton’s emails was marked as classified during her tenure, State Department officials say, but intelligence officials say some material was clearly classified at the time. Her aides also sent and received classified information.
Clinton, running a tough race for the Democratic nomination for president, has been under fire for months for exclusively using personal email routed through a private server while serving as the nation’s top diplomat. The FBI launched an inquiry into the handling of sensitive information after classified information was found in some.
In response to a public records lawsuit, the State Department is releasing Clinton’s emails monthly after partially or entirely redacting any containing sensitive U.S. or foreign government information. So far, it has released 45,830 pages of emails.
Two weeks ago, the State Department designated 22 of previously reviewed emails “top secret” – the first time it has deemed any of Clinton’s emails to be classified at a level that can cause “exceptionally grave” damage to national security if disclosed.
State Department spokesman John Kirby had declined to disclose the emails’ content – seven email chains totaling 37 pages – but said the intelligence community had requested the higher classification. The 22 emails will not be released to the public. The department is releasing other classified emails with some redactions.
Clinton’s campaign has refuted the “top secret” designation and demanded that all of Clinton’s emails be released to the public.
Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon has said that the emails likely originated on the State Department’s unclassified system before they were ever shared with Clinton, and they have remained on the department’s unclassified system for years. In at least one case, he said, the emails appear to involve information from a published news article.
Last week, the State Department inspector general said he had discovered that former Secretary of State Colin Powell and former Secretary Condoleezza Rice’s aides had classified in their personal emails. Powell rejected those allegations.
The State Department had been ordered by a federal judge to release all of Clinton’s emails in January in response to a public records lawsuit. But the State Department said it would be unable to meet the deadline. The judge this week ordered State to release batches of the remaining Clinton's emails on Feb. 13, 19, 26 and 29.