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Court hearing Thursday will focus on key Clinton aide

The judge will hear argument on what's to become of a Freedom of Information Act request for records related to Huma Abedin, a key aide to the 2016 candidate.
Huma Abedin
In this April 29, 2015, file photo, Huma Abedin, attends the David N. Dinkins Leadership and Public Policy Forum in New York. 

A federal judge in Washington has scheduled a hearing for Thursday in what has become a side issue in the Clinton email controversy.

The judge will hear argument on what's to become of a Freedom of Information Act request by Judicial Watch, a conservative group, for records related to Huma Abedin, an aide to Clinton, a 2016 Democratic presidential candidate. Originally filed in 2013, the lawsuit sought details of the arrangement under which Abedin was a "special government employee," allowing her to do outside consulting work while on the federal payroll.

This hearing will presumably not deal with the separate issue of the security of the private email server, nor will it involve the separate lawsuit — before a different judge — that has resulted in the public disclosure of the Clinton emails.

Related: 305 Clinton emails flagged for further classification review

This case was nearly over last year, after the State Department produced a few documents. But with the disclosure of former Secretary of State Clinton's personal email server, Judicial Watch filed new demands for emails about the Abedin issue.

Last Friday, the State Department notified the federal judge overseeing the case that it "has found no responsive records" that relate to the Judicial Watch inquiry in the 55,000 pages of emails.

During Thursday's hearing, the judge will consider what's to become of the lawsuit, in light of the government's statement that it has nothing further to offer Judicial Watch.

The hearing is set for Thursday at noon in courtroom 24A at the federal courthouse in Washington before Judge Emmet Sullivan.

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