Even the Kremlin is disagreeing with the White House’s account of a meeting between Jared Kushner — Donald Trump’s son-in-law — and Russian bankers.
Roughly one month after Donald Trump was elected, Jared Kushner, who is married to Trump’s eldest daughter, Ivanka, met with Sergey Gorkov, the CEO of Russian government-owned Vnesheconombank (VEB). Kushner’s meeting with Gorkov was a diplomatic affair, with Kushner acting as “a transition official,” according to a statement an anonymous Trump official made to Business Insider. The spokesman added that Kushner was “the official primary point of contact with foreign governments and officials” on behalf of Trump’s presidential transition team.
However, Dmitry Peskov, who is a spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin, told reporters in Moscow on Tuesday that Kushner’s meeting with Gorkov was “ordinary business.” The timing of the meeting seems to echo that statement, as Kushner was seeking investors in his 666 Fifth Avenue office building. One of the potential buyers is Chinese insurance group Anbang, which is in talks with the Kushner family about a possible $4 billion deal that would allow the family a way out of their colossal debt obligation through refinancing of existing loans, according to Bloomberg. Democrats have called for a probe into whether or not the deal violates conflict of interest policy.
A of this writing, no deal between the Kushner family and VEB has been struck. Reuters reported earlier this week that Kushner and other business leaders met with Gorkov during a VEB roadshow in 2016 to discuss the bank’s new development strategies.
“[VEB executives met] with a number of representatives of the largest banks and business establishments of the United States, including Jared Kushner, the head of Kushner Companies,” the bank said in an emailed statement.
Kushner has offered to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee in its investigation of the Trump campaign’s communications with Russian officials.
Tom Cahill is a senior editor for the Resistance Report based in the Pacific Northwest. He specializes in coverage of political, economic, and environmental news. You can contact him via email at [email protected], or follow him on Facebook by clicking here.