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Member of Trump team directed Russian Federation contacts, says Michael Flynn

Member of Trump team directed Russian Federation contacts, says Michael Flynn

What has he admitted to?

The Special Counsel's probe has found illegal behavior stretching into the senior most levels of the White House.

The retired Lieutenant General retired from his post as national security adviser in February, after it came out that he had lied about his conversation with Kislyak. The plea agreement makes clear that Flynn is cooperating with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III about his discussions with the "senior official" and others.

How will he co-operate with the investigation?

Jack Posobiec, an aggressively loyal social media Trump sycophant who was kicked out of a pizza restaurant for filming a child's birthday party in an attempt to discover the truth about "Pizzagate", made desperate attempts to spin for President Trump after news broke that General Mike Flynn had testified that officials from the Trump campaign instructed him to talk with Russians.

Mueller's team announced charges in October against three other Trump campaign officials, former chairman Paul Manafort and his business associate Rick Gates, and a former campaign foreign policy adviser, George Papadopoulos.

He is prepared to testify that, as a candidate, Trump "directed him to make contact with the Russians". Mueller's prosecutors indicated they were senior and within Trump's inner circle. Administration officials said Flynn had not discussed sanctions that had been imposed on Russian Federation in part over election meddling.

What were the conversations with the Russians about?

The Statement of the Offense included important new details, including that Flynn was directed by a senior transition official to contact Russian officials in an effort to influence Russia's response to the Obama Administration's imposition of sanctions and the UN Security Council resolution vote on Israeli settlements, and, crucially, that he reported back to transition officials.

They also provide the clearest picture yet of coordination between Flynn and other Trump advisers in contacting Russian officials to influence worldwide policy. Flynn resigned under pressure on February 13, following The Post's disclosure that he had, indeed, discussed sanctions.

Prosecutors also cite an earlier December meeting, in which Flynn asked Kislyak to delay or defeat a UN Security Council resolution. That appears to refer to the body's vote a day later to condemn Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

The Obama administration, in a rare step that shocked its Middle East ally, planned to abstain on the motion rather than veto it as had been done in the past. Trump personally called Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi to press the case against the condemnation, and Egypt postponed the scheduled showdown on December 22 - the same day Flynn met Kislyak.

"As to the United Nations, things will be different after January 20th", Trump said, referencing his upcoming inauguration.

White House lawyer Ty Cobb sought to distance the plea from Trump himself, saying, "Nothing about the guilty plea or the charge implicates anyone other than Mr. Flynn".

Flynn, who was interviewed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation just days after Trump's inauguration, was forced to resign in February after White House officials said he had misled them about whether he had discussed sanctions with the Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak.

Trump has since tweeted about a separate matter.

For Trump, the focus is on whether he has tried to stifle the investigation, including by firing FBI chief James Comey in May, which could draw charges of obstruction of justice, the same charges that forced president Richard Nixon from office in 1974. The same goes for the investigations by the House and Senate intelligence committees, despite the fact that during a closed-door meeting with GOP senators this week Trump implored the Senate committee to wrap up its own inquiry.


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