News Worms
News Worms

Flynn retroactively registers as a foreign agent for lobbying work

Flynn retroactively registers as a foreign agent for lobbying work

According to an Associated Pres report, some of the lobbying work may have aided the Turkish government.

A lawyer for the former U.S. Army lieutenant general and intelligence chief said in paperwork filed Tuesday with the Justice Department's Foreign Agent Registration Unit that Flynn was voluntarily registering for lobbying that "could be construed to have principally benefited the Republic of Turkey".

The line the White House is trying to toe here: that the work Flynn-the incoming national security adviser-was doing on behalf of a group tied to a foreign government is simply a "personal" matter.

Flynn registered this week as a foreign agent, retroactively disclosing that he was lobbying for the Turkish government during the 2016 election. "Willfully failing to register is a felony, though the Justice Department rarely files criminal charges in such cases".

Alptekin told the AP he set up the meeting at a NY hotel between Flynn and the two officials while the officials were attending United Nations sessions and a separate conference Alptekin had arranged. "It would be different if I was working for the government of Turkey", Alpetkin told CBS, "but I am not taking directions from anyone in the government".

He reportedly registered due to pressure from Justice Department officials.

Erdogan, whose government has been accused of authoritarian tendencies, has faced repeated allegations of maintaining financial ties to terrorist groups such as ISIS.

Flynn Intel Group Inc.

Also complicating the White House's narrative: a letter furnished by Rep. Elijah Cummings, the ranking member of the House Oversight Committee.

A senior Turkish official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the government of Turkey, as a matter of longstanding state policy, has been using legal and transparent ways to retain lobbying firms in Washington, and has nothing to do with the FIG.

Flynn, at the invitation of Inovo's founder, met with Turkish officials including the ministers of foreign affairs and energy in NY in September.

Alptekin, who founded Inovo in 2005, is the chairman of the Turkish-American Business Council, which is connected to the Foreign Relations Board of Turkey. The documents say Alptekin "introduced officials of the Republic of Turkey to Flynn Intel Group officials at a meeting on September 19, 2016, in NY".

In the opinion piece, Flynn paints Fethullah Gulen, the USA based cleric whom Erdogan blames for the coup attempt, as a "radical Islamist". The firm doesn't believe Inovo shared information regarding the op-ed with the Turkish government. Flynn wrote that Turkey needed support and reiterated Erdogan's warnings about Gulen. In the new filing, Flynn disclosed that in writing the op-ed, he relied on research conducted as part of the Inovo BV contract.


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