The Russian bank chairman with whom Jared Kushner said he met in December in the lead-up to President Trump’s inauguration did not do so under Kremlin orders, a spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters Tuesday.
Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law and senior advisor, disclosed during a Senate hearing Monday that he had met with Sergei Gorkov, the head of Russian state-owned Vnesheconombank, on Dec. 13. Kushner’s comments came as part of an ongoing congressional investigation into possible Kremlin meddling in the 2016 presidential election. The Kremlin has denied such interference.
Kushner said in his statement Monday the meeting was arranged at the suggestion of Sergei Kislyak, the outgoing Russian ambassador in Washington.
Vnesheconombank is a Russian development bank, and Gorkov was in the U.S. at the time of the meeting with Kushner for a routine roadshow. It’s “normal practice” for a senior banker to hold meetings with U.S. representatives, Peskov said during a conference call with reporters.
“These contacts do not require any authorization from the Kremlin, and they were not carried out on behalf of the Kremlin,” Peskov said.