President Trump’s son-in-law has released an eleven page statement arguing that he did not collude with the Russia and that he has very limited connections with them. “I did not collude, nor know of anyone else in the campaign who colluded, with any foreign government,” Kushner stated.
“I had no improper contacts. I have not relied on Russian funds to finance my business activities in the private sector. I have tried to be fully transparent with regard to the filing of my SF-86 form, above and beyond what is required. Hopefully, this puts these matters to rest,” Kushner further insisted.
Although Kushner was in attendance at the meeting between Russia and Trump Jr., Krushner noted, “In June 2016, my brother-in-law, Donald Trump Jr. asked if I was free to stop by a meeting on 9 June at 3pm. The campaign was headquartered in the same building as his office in Trump Tower, and it was common for each of us to swing by the other’s meetings when requested. He eventually sent me his own email changing the time of the meeting to 4pm. That email was on top of a long back and forth that I did not read at the time. As I did with most emails when I was working remotely, I quickly reviewed on my iPhone the relevant message that the meeting would occur at 4pm at his office. Documents confirm my memory that this was calendared as ‘Meeting: Don Jr | Jared Kushner.’”
Kushner recollects that the meeting seemed very uninteresting and that he had to call his assistant during the meeting to help him get out of it.
“[I]n looking for a polite way to leave and get back to my work,” he admitted, “I actually emailed an assistant from the meeting after I had been there for ten or so minutes and wrote ‘Can u pls call me on my cell? Need excuse to get out of meeting.’ I had not met the attorney before the meeting nor spoken with her since. I thought nothing more of this short meeting until it came to my attention recently.”
He added that the part of the meeting he attended didn’t talk much about the Trump campaign. “No part of the meeting I attended included anything about the campaign,” Kushner stated. “There was no follow up to the meeting that I am aware of, I do not recall how many people were there (or their names), and I have no knowledge of any documents being offered or accepted.”
Kushner also denied that during the meeting with a Russian ambassador and Michael Flynn, he did not ask for opening a “secret back channel” to the Russian government.
“I believed developing a thoughtful approach on Syria was a very high priority given the ongoing humanitarian crisis,” he argued. “And I asked if they had an existing communications channel at his embassy we could use where they would be comfortable transmitting the information they wanted to relay to General Flynn, “he added.
“I did not raise the possibility of using the embassy or any other Russian facility for any purpose other than this one possible conversation in the transition period,” he stated. “We did not discuss sanctions.”
Moreover he mentioned that he did not have any previous interactions with Russia and highlighted that the only contact was probably through an email he had received back in 2016.”There was one more possible contact that I will note. On October 30, 2016, I received a random email from the screenname ‘Guccifer400.’ This email, which I interpreted as a hoax, was an extortion attempt and threatened to reveal candidate Trump’s tax returns and demanded that we send him 52 bitcoins in exchange for not publishing that information. I brought the email to the attention of a U.S. Secret Service agent on the plane we were all travelling on and asked what he thought. He advised me to ignore it and not to reply — which is what I did. The sender never contacted me again.”
Kushner argued that he tries to focus on important issues rather than indulging in leaking information to the media. “It has been my practice not to appear in the media or leak information in my own defense and that, “I have tried to focus on the important work at hand and serve this President and this country to the best of my abilities.”