Two top Trump advisers dodge Kushner questions

The Washington Post reports Jared Kushner discussed setting up a line of secret communication between the Trump transition and the Russians.

The Washington Post said the secret communications proposal was made December 1 or 2 at Trump Tower in NY, according to intercepts of Russian communications that were reviewed by United States officials.

"I mean, we have back-channel communications with a number of - with a number of countries", McMaster said.

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster said he doesn't find back-channel communications with Russian Federation concerning.

Russia's ambassador to the USA told his bosses that he and Jared Kushner talked about setting up a secret channel for communication between Donald Trump's transition team and Moscow, according to a report.

The Post reported last week that the Russian Federation investigation had been extended to a top White House official as a "significant person of interest".

The White House did not immediately comment on either claim, both outlets reported.

In response to the revelation, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) called for Trump to fire Kushner from his position as a senior adviser to the president.

Flynn served briefly as Trump's national security adviser before being fired in February after officials said he misled Vice-President Mike Pence about whether he and the ambassador had discussed US sanctions against Russian Federation in a phone call. One White House official at the time characterized it as a brief courtesy meeting and confirmed that Flynn was in the room.

Reached Friday, an administration official said there would be no comment on the latest Kushner report.

Flynn was pushed out of the White House in February after officials said he misled Vice President Mike Pence about whether he and the ambassador had discussed US sanctions against Russian Federation in a phone call.

However unlike President Trump's former aides Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn - who are formally considered subjects of the Federal Bureau of Investigation probe - they said Mr Kushner might not be suspected of any crime.

Kushner is not the central focus of the investigation, but his meetings with a Russian banker and an ambassador in December 2016 have piqued the interest of the FBI, according to the report.

The details were shared with CNN as an explanation to The Washington Post reporting, which it said was based on intercepts of conversations between Russia's ambassador and Moscow.

The White House also faces a cascade of other worries related to the Russian Federation probe in the coming week.

Despite Trump's repeated denials that his team colluded with Russian Federation, former CIA director John Brennan told the Senate Intelligence Committee on May 23 that the investigation into possible collusion between Trump campaign officials and the Kremlin is "well-founded". "He will do the same if he is contacted in connection with any other inquiry", said Jamie Gorelick, his attorney.

On May 9, President Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, who helmed a probe into the Trump campaign's ties with Russian officials.

In his absence, however, controversy has continued to swirl around his administration back home, concerning alleged collusion between members of his campaign team and Russian officials during the 2016 presidential election campaign.

At the time, Mr Kushner was a private citizen, but working in Mr Trump's transition team.

  • Salvatore Jensen