Donald Trump dismisses Jared Kushner-Kremlin claims as 'fake news'

Frederick Owens
June 7, 2017

The White House has stood behind senior adviser Jared Kushner, despite reports that he sought to arrange covert communications with Russian Federation in the weeks preceding Donald Trump's election as president.

"It is my opinion that numerous leaks coming out of the White House are fabricated lies made up by the #FakeNews media", he said in another tweet to his more than 30.8 followers. USA media said the White House is creating a new rapid-fire communications unit to respond to the controversy, led by Kushner, senior presidential adviser Steve Bannon and White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.

According to the Times, that meeting has come under increasing scrutiny from investigators examining the possibility of collusion between the Russian government and individuals with ties to Trump's 2016 campaign.

Trump officials were preparing to establish a "war room" to address an issue that has begun to dominate his young presidency.

The White House has been shaken by an explosive Washington Post report on the eve of his return that said Kushner had met with the Russian ambassador prior to Trump's inauguration and proposed a secret communications link to the Kremlin.

Trump has said he has full confidence in Kushner.

Trump semi-regularly retweets items from FOX News and promotes shows from the network.

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Acknowledging that Kushner's conversations with Russia's ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak occurred "during the transition period, I think", Kelly told NBC's Chuck Todd Sunday that he sees no cause for concern.

On Saturday White House national security adviser H.R. McMaster suggested such communications might be typical, saying the back channel communications the administration has with a number of countries allow for "discreet" communication.

But Kushner's communications with the Russians have drawn the interest of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which is investigating allegations Russia tried to meddle in the United States election, and whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with agents of the Russian government. But the timing of their meeting has raised questions given allegations by USA intelligence agencies that Russian Federation had worked to meddle in November's election to help Trump.

The FBI scrutiny of Kushner began when intelligence reports of Flynn's contacts with Russians included mentions of U.S. citizens, whose names were redacted because of USA privacy laws.

Kushner initially had come to the attention of FBI investigators past year as they began scrutinising former national security adviser Michael Flynn'€™s connections with Russian officials, the two sources told Reuters.

Some Democrats are already asking for an investigation and even calling for Kushner's security clearance to be revoked. One key lawmaker, Senator Bob Corker, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said Sunday, "He seems to be a very open person". "They reached out to us yesterday to make sure that we knew that was the case and I'€™m sure he's willing to do so,"€ Corker said on NBC's Meet The Press. "They are not our friends".

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