Flynn talked sanctions against Russia with ambassador: report

Flynn talked sanctions against Russia with ambassador: report
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President Trump’s national security adviser talked about sanctions against Russia with the country’s ambassador in December, The Washington Post reports.

The report, which cites current and former U.S. officials, contradicts Michael Flynn’s assertion on Wednesday that he never discussed the topic with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during a series of phone calls in the month before Trump took office.

A spokesman for Flynn walked back that denial on Thursday, saying that “while he had no recollection of discussing sanctions, he couldn’t be certain that the topic never came up,” according to the Post.

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The phone calls are still part of an ongoing review by the FBI into Russia's meddling in U.S. politics, but officials told the Post that they had not found evidence that Flynn made a deal to loosen sanctions after Trump took office.

The U.S. imposed fresh sanctions against Russia in December following revelations that the Kremlin had tried to influence the 2016 presidential election in favor of Trump.

Trump administration officials have denied that Flynn and Kislyak ever spoke about sanctions in their phone calls.

“General Flynn has been in touch with diplomatic leaders, security leaders in some 30 countries. That’s exactly what the incoming national security advisor should do,” Vice President Pence told CBS anchor John Dickerson in January.

“But what I can confirm, having spoken to him about it, is that those conversations that happened to occur around the time that the United States took action to expel diplomats had nothing whatsoever to do with those sanctions,” he continued.

But two U.S. officials told the Post that Flynn led Kislyak to believe that the sanctions would be reevaluated after Trump took office.

“Kislyak was left with the impression that the sanctions would be revisited at a later time,” one official said.