US Republican senator calls for interviewing Trump Jr. in Russia probe

July 11, 2017 7:20 pm

, Jr. (L) and Eric Trump attend the inauguration ceremony for the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Vancouver, Canada, on February 28, 2017. (Photos by AFP)

A Republican senator is calling for an interview of President Donald Trump’s son as part of an investigation into Russia’s alleged meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
Maine Senator Susan Collins urged the Senate Intelligence Committee Monday to interview Donald Trump Jr. over a meeting he had with a Russian lawyer linked to the Kremlin in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.
In a declassified report released in January, the intelligence community concluded that Russia helped with the New York billionaire’s campaign effort ahead of winning the White House, an allegation dismissed both by Moscow and Trump.
Donald Trump Jr., had been promised damaging information about his father’s opponent, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, ahead of meeting with Natalia Veselnitskaya, The New York Times reported on Sunday, citing US officials.

Donald Trump, Jr. holds his daughter Chloe and his son Tristan as they walk off Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base on April 16, 2017.

Collins, a committee member, told reporters in Washington that “our intelligence committee needs to interview him and others who attended the meeting.”
Then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, also took part in a meeting with the Russian lawyer.
Trump Jr. initially denied that he had received any information about the former secretary of state, asserting that the meeting had been held at the request of an acquaintance.
“Her statements were vague, ambiguous and made no sense. No details or supporting information was provided or even offered. It quickly became clear that she had no meaningful information,” Trump Jr. said in a statement.

President Donald Trump kisses his son Eric Trump after his inauguration on the West Front of the US Capitol on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC.

On Monday, he voiced willingness to work with US Congress in relation to the report.
“Happy to work with the committee to pass on what I know,” said the American president’s son.
The Kremlin, meanwhile, denied any knowledge of the meeting and that it knew Veselnitskaya on Monday.
The Senate intelligence panel, meanwhile, is “walking through the details” of the meeting, according to Oklahama Republican Senator James Lankford.
The FBI as well as congressional committees are investigating whether the Russian government coordinated with Trump associates during the 2016 campaign and transition.
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