THE US State Department has proposed releasing portions of 55,000 pages of e-mails from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by next January.
The proposal came in a federal court filing late on Monday in response to a Freedom of Information Act case brought by Vice News.
In the filing, John F Hackett, who is responsible for the department’s responses to FoI requests, said that following a review of the e-mails, the department would post the releasable portions of the 55,000 pages on its website.
He said its review would take until the end of the year and asked the court to adopt a completion date of 15 January, 2016, to factor in the US holidays.
Mrs Clinton, the Democratic front-runner in the 2016 presidential election, has said she wants the department to release the e-mails as soon as possible. The disclosure that she conducted State Department business on a private e-mail account has fuelled controversy since she launched her campaign for the presidency earlier this year
In Monday night’s filing in the US District Court for the District of Columbia, Mr Hackett said the State Department received the 55,000 pages of e-mails from Mrs Clinton in paper form.
“Given the breadth and importance of the many foreign policy issues on which the Secretary of State and the department work, the review of these materials will likely require consultation with a broad range of subject matter experts within the department and other agencies, as well as potentially with foreign governments,” he said.
He said the department understood the considerable public interest in Clinton e-mails.