Is Washington Post's Sessions-Kislyak Purported Intelligence 'Scoop' More Fake News?

Patrice Gainsbourg
Julho 24, 2017

The other two meetings with Russian representatives detailed in Kushner's statement include the time he "shook hands [and] exchanged brief pleasantries" with ambassadors including Kislyak following then-candidate Trump's foreign policy speech at Washington DC's Mayflower Hotel in April 2016.

In the 11-page statement, Kushner states that during the 2016 presidential campaign he had "hardly any" contact with Russian Federation or Russia representatives.

The meeting's participants said the meeting instead focused on Russian adoptions, and Kushner says in his statement that he emailed his assistant about 10 minutes after he walked into the room.

Trump Jr. and Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who was also at the June 2016 meeting, were scheduled to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee this week. "I had no improper contacts. I have not relied on Russian funds to finance my business activities in the private sector", he said, according to the Post report. He also failed to disclose meetings with dozens of foreign government officials when applying for a security clearance.

"No one who has paid any attention to this administration should doubt that if Kushner ever needs a pardon, he will get one", he said.

Russian and other foreign diplomats in Washington and elsewhere have been known, at times, to report false or misleading information to bolster their standing with their superiors or to confuse USA intelligence agencies.

He also told a Senate committee last month that any suggestion that he colluded with Russian Federation during last year's campaign was an "appalling and detestable lie". "That is really something, in my opinion, he needs to look at because what concerns me the most, is anything that can be held over the President's head that could influence US policy, that would be among most powerful form of kompromat". The third was a meeting with Kislyak during the transition. He says it was listed on his calendar as "Meeting: Don Jr".

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Kushner described the encounter as a waste of time.

"Obviously I can not comment on the reliability of what anonymous sources describe in a wholly uncorroborated intelligence intercept that the Washington Post has not seen and that has not been provided to me", a Justice Department spokeswoman told the Post. They had previously said to ABC News that they'd cooperate but didn't respond on this specific matter.

Kushner says that when Kislyak asked if there was a secure line for him to provide information on Syria from what Kislyak called his "generals", Kushner asked if there was an existing communications channel at the embassy that could be used. I did not raise the possibility of using the embassy or any other Russian facility for any goal other than this one possible conversation in the transition period.

"I did not know or have any contact with Mr. Gorkov before that meeting, and I have had no reason to connect with him since", Kushner wrote.

Russian ambassador to the United States Sergei Kislyak - a high-profile figure in the controversy over Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election- has concluded his assignment in Washington. "We did not discuss sanctions".

He would subsequently update the SF-86 form two more times.

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