White House Senier Adviser Jared Kushner (at the back) listens as US President Donald Trump speaks at a meeting with business leaders in the Roosevelt Room at the White House in Washington, DC, January 23, 2017. (Photo by AFP)
Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, has become a “person of interest” in the ongoing investigation into the new US president and his team’s ties with Russia, according to a report.
Investigators are believed to have questioned Kushner with regards to the case, the New York magazine reported on Friday.
Earlier, The Washington Post reported that a senior adviser to Trump was being investigated. It said the person under investigation was close to the President, but did not identify them.
“It’s Jared Kushner. Have confirmed this with four people. I’m not speculating,” Yashar Ali, a New York magazine reporter, said in a tweet.
Kushner, who is married to Trump’s eldest daughter Ivanka, went to Washington earlier on Friday to accompany Trump on his first foreign trip.
Trump’s critics say the trip, which involves stops in Saudi Arabia, Israel and Vatican respectively, is designed to take away attention from the chaos that swept the White House following Trump’s decision to fire FBI chief James Comey.
FBI Director James Comey (Photo by AFP)
Trump has admitted that Comey’s firing had to do with “the Russian thing,” raising the possibility that his son-in-law might have pushed him to dismiss the FBI chief.
If true, this won’t be the first time that Kushner is using his influence in the White House to take down people he doesn’t feel comfortable working with.
He reportedly persuaded Trump to remove Chief White House Strategist Steve Bannon from the National Security Council‘s principals committee in early April.
Trump has seemingly assigned Kushner with taking care of Washington’s affairs in the Middle East.
He has negotiated with Saudis over $100 billion of arms deals, which Trump is expected to sign during his trip to the kingdom.
Trump has also tasked Kushner, who lacks political experience, with brokering a peace deal between Palestine and Israel.
Trump relieved after firing ‘nut job’ Comey
Meanwhile, The New York Times reported Friday that Trump had discussed Comey’s firing with Russian officials.
“I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job,” the Times quoted Trump as saying, citing a document summarizing the Republican president’s last week meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the White House.
“I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off,” he said at the meeting, which was also attended by Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
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