Sessions to testify in front of Senate Intel committee this week

The appearance before the Senate intelligence committee comes one week after former FBI Director Comey cryptically told lawmakers the bureau had expected Sessions to recuse himself weeks before he did from an investigation into contacts between Trump campaign associates and Russian Federation during the 2016 election.

He will appear before the Senate intelligence committee on Tuesday, he said in a letter to Senator Richard Shelby.

With reports circulating that Trump had been clashing with his attorney general, and that Sessions had offered to resign, the White House on Tuesday declined to say whether the president maintained confidence in Sessions.

Sessions stepped aside in March from the federal investigation into contacts between Russia and the campaign after acknowledging that had met twice past year with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. He had told lawmakers at his January confirmation hearing that he had not met with Russians during the campaign. The Senate panel is investigating allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election.

Comey's testimony raised questions about Sessions' engagements with Russian Federation and his involvement in Comey's firing despite Sessions' recusal from the Russian Federation investigation, which Comey was leading.

Two sources familiar with what Comey said in the closed door gatherings told NBC News about the confirmation. Multiple sources confirmed that the president was disappointed with the attorney general's recusal - a decision Trump only learned about minutes before it was announced in March.

The New York City federal prosecutor who expected to remain on the job when Trump took office but ended up being fired said he was made uncomfortable by one-on-one interactions with the president - just like Comey was.

He testified that he had not met with Russian government officials during the campaign, but later was obliged to change that account.

Former FBI director Mr Comey appeared before the same panel last week, during which he accused the White House of "lying" about the FBI.

Trump's alleged comments to Comey about Flynn "is a big deal, and can't be excused by simply being a novice", Preet Bharara said on ABC's This Week, the first televised interview since his own firing by Trump in March as a federal prosecutor in NY.

Comey told the intelligence committee in a closed session that Sessions may have had a third, undisclosed interaction with Russia's ambassador to the USA, according to people familiar with the briefing.

Lawmakers and critics have expressed concern about any possible role by Sessions in either sacking Comey, or in subverting the ongoing investigation by the FBI. "We on the Intelligence Committee want to know the answers to those questions, and we have begun to request information from the attorney general to allow us to get to the bottom of that".