WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department on Monday released the 14th and final batch of emails from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's private server, bringing the total to more than 52,000 including some 2,000 that were censored for containing information now deemed classified.
In releasing the final batch of 3,800 documents, the department also settled a long-running dispute over one sensitive email as intelligence agencies dropped a months-long demand an exchange on North Korea's nuclear program to be designated "top secret," the highest level of classification. The State Department, which had insisted the information was not classified at all, partially won its battle over the document as the intelligence community revised its initial assessment and determined the information was "secret," the next lower classification.
"Based on subsequent review, the intelligence community revisited its earlier assessment," State Department spokesman John Kirby told reporters. He added: "The original assessment was not correct and the document does not contain top secret information."
The announcement came a day before Clinton competes in 11 Democratic primary contests. She is the front-runner to win the Democratic presidential nomination. The department faced a Monday deadline set by a federal judge to release the final documents from the private server Clinton exclusively used while in government. Clinton aides went through her emails and turned over the ones they determined to be work-related.
The North Korea email is one of two that Charles I. McCullough, lead auditor for U.S. intelligence agencies, identified last year as particularly problematic. The other concerned the CIA's drone program and led to officials classifying 22 emails from Clinton's private account last month as "top secret." They were withheld from publication.
No emails Clinton wrote or received were marked as classified at the time of transmission, which Clinton has repeatedly cited in her own defense.
As with earlier releases, Monday's contained emails with information that has been upgraded to "secret" and "confidential." Two hundren and sixty one were so identified, bringing the total of such upgrades to more than 2,050 for the entire set. No material in Monday's release contained documents with information now deemed "top secret."