Trump aides keep mum on Kushner-Russia reports

Obama administration officials told The Associated Press this past week that the frequency of Flynn's discussions with Kislyak raised enough red flags that aides discussed the possibility Trump was trying to establish a one-to-one line of communication - a back channel - with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

On Friday, the Washington Post and New York Times reported that Mr Kushner had wanted to use Russian facilities to avoid United States interception of discussions with Moscow.

The details were shared with CNN as an explanation to The Washington Post reporting, which it said was based on intercepts of conversations between Russia's ambassador and Moscow.

He said: "We have back-channel communications with any number of individual countries". He added: "It allows you to communicate in a discreet manner".

Economic adviser Gary Cohn said: "We're not going to comment on Jared".

Mr Flynn was sacked in February after misleading the White House about his contact with Mr Kislyak.

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Congressional committees want to find out if the Russians stopped Hilary Clinton getting to the White House. However, Moscow has repeatedly denied the allegations and Trump has said he has not collaborated with Russian Federation. But Mr. Kushner is not now the subject of a criminal investigation.

The channel would be created inside Russia's diplomatic facilities in the US, apparently in a bid to evade monitoring by the American intelligence community. "He has no recollection of the calls as described", Kushner's lawyer Jamie Gorelick told POLITICO in a statement. But people familiar with the matter say the Federal Bureau of Investigation now considers the encounter, as well as another meeting Kushner had with a Russian banker, to be of investigative interest.

Reuters reported that FBI investigators are examining whether Russians suggested to Kushner or other Trump aides that relaxing economic sanctions against Russia would allow such Russian banks to offer financing to people with ties to Trump. "We have asked for the dates of such alleged calls so we may look into and respond".

The White House declined to comment. Labeling him a "target" would suggest Kushner was a main suspect of the investigation.

Investigators believe Mr Kushner has significant information relevant to their inquiry, officials told NBC News.

Earlier this year, Mr Kushner became a focus of the FBI investigation into possible collusion between the campaign and the Kremlin, according to two of the Reuters sources.

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The meeting, as well as the communications of Americans involved, were not under USA surveillance, according to the Post.

Also, Reuters has reported that Mr Kushner had at least three previously undisclosed contacts with Mr Kislyak during and after the 2016 campaign. This prompted investigators to ask USA intelligence agencies to reveal the names of the Americans, the current U.S. law enforcement official said.

The discussion of a secret channel is the latest in a series of controversial reports and leaks regarding the Trump team's contacts with Russian Federation.

Mr Kushner, who is married to the president's daughter, Ivanka, has said he will co-operate with any investigation.

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