WASHINGTON (AP) — The Washington Post reported Friday that the Russian ambassador to the U.S. told his superiors in Moscow that he discussed Trump campaign-related issues, including policy issues, with then-Sen. Jeff Sessions when the two men met during the 2016 presidential race, contrary to public assertions by the embattled attorney general.
The Post is citing anonymous U.S. officials who described U.S. intelligence intercepts of Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak’s descriptions of his meetings with Sessions. The conversations were intercepted by U.S. spy agencies, which monitor the communications of senior Russian officials both in the United States and in Russia. Sessions initially failed to disclose his contacts with Kislyak and then said that the meetings were not about the Trump campaign
Sessions was then a foreign policy adviser to Republican candidate Donald Trump. The former Alabama senator now serves as the U.S. attorney general.
Sessions failed to disclose the meetings with Kislyak during his confirmation hearing for attorney general. He later said he did not recall discussing the Trump campaign with Kislyak.
“I never had meetings with Russian operatives or Russian intermediaries about the Trump campaign,” Attorney General Sessions said in March when he announced that he would recuse himself from matters relating to the FBI probe of Russian interference in the election and any connections to the Trump campaign.
Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores says Sessions stands by his previous assertion that he never had conversations with Russian officials about any type of interference with the election.