Outrage has greeted media reports that say American intelligence officials believe a Russian military intelligence unit offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants for killing foreign soldiers in Afghanistan, including targeting Americans.
The story first appeared [nytimes.com] in the New York Times, citing its sources as unnamed officials briefed on the matter, and followed up [washingtonpost.com] by the Washington Post. The reports said that the US had come to the conclusion about the operation several months ago and offered rewards for successful attacks last year.
The Times wrote: "The intelligence finding was briefed to Trump, and the White House's National Security Council discussed the problem at an interagency meeting in late March." White House officials apparently drew up several possible options to retaliate against the Kremlin, ranging from a diplomatic reprimand right through to fresh sanctions. However, the White House has so far not taken any action.
It is not clear if bounties were ever paid out for successfully killing American soldiers.