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World
12 Jul 2017

Trump Jr.'s emails shows him welcoming Russian material on Clinton

An email chain from June 2016 released by President Donald Trump's son shows him keen to accept "sensitive" information on his father's rival Hilary Clinton from a Russian citizen.

Donald Trump Jr. was told the information was part of the Russian government's attempt at damaging the Clinton campaign.

This comes amid investigations into the Trump campaign's alleged collusion with Russia in the presidential election.

In context

Trump Jr. releases emails of Russian lawyer meeting

10 Jul 2017

Trump's son, son-in-law met Russian lawyer over Clinton info

On July 10, President Donald Trump's son agreed to meeting Natalia Veselnitskaya, a Kremlin-linked Russian lawyer last year, after being promised damaging information about Trump's rival Hillary Clinton.

Donald Trump Jr. said "no meaningful information" on Clinton was shared, the New York Times reported.

The president's son-in-law Jared Kushner also attended the meeting.

Details

What the emails stated

Publicist Rob Goldstone told Donald Trump Jr. that the information is "part of Russia and its government's support for Mr Trump."

Trump Jr. replied: "If it's what you say, I love it."

Goldstone said the person Trump Jr. would meet was "a Russian government attorney who is flying over from Moscow."

This led to a meeting between Trump Jr. and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya.

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Trump Jr. explains why he released the email

"To everyone, in order to be totally transparent, I am releasing the entire email chain of my emails with Rob Goldstone about the meeting on June 9, 2016. To put this in context, this occurred before the current Russian fever was in vogue."

What happened next

Emails led to meeting with Russian lawyer

The meeting with Veselnitskaya on June 9, 2016, was attended by Tump's son-in-law Jared Kushner and election campaign manager Paul Manafort.

Veselnitskaya had promised compromising information on Clinton which she apparently failed to deliver.

Trump Jr. earlier said "no meaningful information" on Clinton was shared at the meeting.

Veselnitskaya says she has never worked with the Russian government.

President Trump lauds son's decision to release emails

"My son is a high-quality person and I applaud his transparency," President Trump said in a statement, following his son's email release. Trump Jr. said he didn't inform his father about the meeting with Veselnitskaya.

Analysis

Trump Jr.'s emails raise questions about president's assertions on Russia

Trump Jr.'s disclosure raises questions about whether the Trump team broke campaign laws and why its senior associates failed to report a hostile act by a foreign power.

This is the first confirmation that a Trump associate attended meeting expecting sensitive material from a Russian official.

It dents President Trump's assertions that there was no collaboration between his campaign and the Russian government.

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