U.S. Attorney General Barr will release redacted copy of Mueller report by mid-April

WASHINGTON, March 29 (Reuters) - U.S. Attorney General William Barr plans to issue a redacted copy of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's nearly 400-page investigative report into Russian interference in the 2016 election by mid-April, he said in a letter to lawmakers on Friday.

"Everyone will soon be able to read it on their own," Barr wrote in the letter to the top Democrats and Republicans on the Senate and House Judiciary committees.

He said he is willing to appear before both committees to testify about Mueller's report on May 1 and May 2.

Mueller completed his 22-month investigation probe into whether President Donald Trump's campaign colluded with Russia on March 22.

On Sunday, Barr sent a four-page letter to Congress that outlined Mueller's main findings. Barr told lawmakers that Mueller's investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired with Russia in its election interference activities.

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William Barr through the years
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William Barr through the years
FILE - In this Nov. 12, 1991 file photo, then Attorney General nominee William Barr is shown on Capitol Hill in Washington. Barr once advised the U.S. government that it could attack Iraq without Congressional approval, arrest a deposed foreign dictator and capture suspects abroad without that country’s permission. Those decisions reflect a broad view of presidential power that Barr, President Donald Trump's pick to reclaim his old attorney general job, demonstrated at the Justice Department and in the years since. (AP Photo/John Duricka)
U.S. President George H. Bush signs into law new civil rights guarantees for women and minorities at a Rose Garden ceremony, Thursday, Nov. 21, 1991 in Washington, as Vice President Dan Quayle, left, and Acting Attorney General William Barr look on. The bill signing capped a two-year struggle with congress over whether the legislation encouraged job quotas. (AP Photo/Marcy Nighswander)
U.S. President George H. Bush, right, and William Barr wave after Barr was sworn in as the new Attorney General of the United States, Tuesday, Nov. 26, 1991 at a Justice Department ceremony in Washington. (AP Photo/Scott Applewhite)
U.S. President George H. Bush gestures while talking to Attorney General William Barr in the Oval Office of the White House, Monday, May 4, 1992 in Washington. The President met with top domestic Cabinet officers to tackle long-range problems pushed to the forefront by last week's deadly riots in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcy Nighswander)
Board member of MCI Telecommunications, Nicholas Katzenbach, second left, speaks at hearing before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary on "The WorldCom Case: Looking at Bankruptcy and Competition Issues" on Capitol Hill in Washington Tuesday, July 22, 2003. Witnesses are, from left, Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Verizon Communications William Barr, Katzenbach, Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP's Marcia Goldstein, Communications Workers of America President Morton Bahr, National Bankruptcy Conference Vice-Chair Douglas Baird, Cerberus Capital Management Chief Operation Officer Mark Neporent. (AP Photo/Akira Ono)
Former Georgia Congressman Bob Barr, left, listens as William Redpath, Libertarian Party national chairman, answers a question at a news conference in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2007. (AP Photo)
President Donald Trump's attorney general nominee, William Barr, meets with Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019. Barr, who served in the position in the early 1990s, has a confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee next week and could be in place at the Justice Department as soon as February when Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein leaves after Barr is confirmed. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
President Donald Trump's attorney general nominee, William Barr, left, meets with Senate Judiciary Committee member and Trump confidant Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019. Barr, who served in the position in the early 1990s, has a confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee next week and could be in place at the Justice Department as soon as February when Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein leaves after Barr is confirmed. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
President Donald Trump's attorney general nominee, William Barr, arrives to meet with Senate Judiciary Committee member and Trump confidant Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019. Barr, who served in the position in the early 1990s, has a confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee next week and could be in place at the Justice Department as soon as February when Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein leaves after Barr is confirmed. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
President Donald Trump's attorney general nominee, William Barr, right, meets with Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019. Barr, who served in the position in the early 1990s, has a confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee next week and could be in place at the Justice Department as soon as February when Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein leaves after Barr is confirmed. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Attorney General nominee William Barr , left, turns to answer a reporter's question as he arrives to meet with Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019 in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
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Mueller left unresolved the question of whether Trump obstructed justice during the investigation. Barr said that based on the evidence presented, he concluded it was not sufficient to charge the president with obstruction.

He said his four-page letter on Sunday "was not, and did not purport to be an exhaustive recounting" of Mueller's investigation and said he believes the public should be allowed to read it and judge for themselves.

"I do not believe it would be in the public's interest for me to attempt to summarize the full report or release it in serial or piecemeal fashion," he wrote.

Lawmakers have since been clamoring for more details, with Democrats calling for a full release of the report and some lawmakers urging a deadline of April 2.

Barr said in his letter on Friday that certain information must be redacted before the report is released, including secret grand jury information, intelligence sources and methods and information that by law cannot be public or might infringe on privacy.

He said Trump has the right to assert executive privilege on some materials but that "Trump has stated publicly that he intends to defer to me."

Because of that, he said, there are no plans for the Justice Department to submit the report to the White House for a privilege review.

At a rally on Thursday in Michigan, Trump celebrated the end of the investigation and what he called "lies and smears and slander." (Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch Editing by Bill Trott)

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