Russian lawyer ‘happy’ to testify before Senate on Donald Trump Jr. meeting
Leigh Vogel/WireImage(MOSCOW) — The Russian lawyer who met with U.S. President Donald Trump’s eldest son last year said she would be willing to testify before the U.S. Senate about the meeting.
In an on-camera interview with Russian state-funded network RT Tuesday, Natalia Veselnitskaya said she is “ready to clarify the situation” as long as her safety is assured.
“I’m ready if I’m guaranteed safety because today I have to think about my safety first and foremost, about the safety of my family, my four children,” she told RT. “If the Senate wishes to hear the real story, I will be happy to speak up and share everything I wanted to tell Mr. Trump last year.”
Donald Trump Jr. last week released four pages of what he said was an email exchange with publicist Rob Goldstone in June 2016. The messages appear to show Goldstone’s saying the “Crown prosecutor of Russia” could provide damaging information about Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the heat of the 2016 presidential race. In response, Donald Trump Jr. wrote, “I love it.”
The emails preceded a meeting at Trump Tower in New York City with Veselnitskaya. Donald Trump Sr.’s then-campaign chairman Paul Manafort and son-in-law Jared Kushner also attended.
Donald Trump Jr. said in a statement last week that Veselnitskaya had “no information to provide.”
In an interview with ABC News in Moscow last week, Veselnitskaya acknowledged that the younger Trump had expected her to present him with incriminating information about Clinton when they met at Trump Tower. But she denied offering him information from the Russian government and called the situation a misunderstanding, claiming she had no idea how it happened.
“I think he was misled about my role, myself and about my request to everyone,” Veselnitskaya told ABC News on July 12. “I have never had compromising materials on Hillary Clinton. I have never pronounced such a word.”
Veselnitskaya was also unclear about who organized her meeting with Donald Trump Jr. She told ABC News that a Russian speaker, whose name she could not recall, contacted her via telephone, saying he worked for Goldstone and that he was organizing a meeting between her and Trump. She said the caller may not have identified himself and, if he did, she forgot his name.
In the on-camera interview Tuesday with RT, Veselnitskaya reiterated that she does not know Goldstone, calling the email exchange between him and Trump “complete nonsense.”
“I don’t know that person,” she said of Goldstone. “It is nonsense, totally insane. Show me this man. I want to look him in the eye. It is complete nonsense.”
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