Treasury Department Eases Some Cybersanctions Against Russia
U.S. businesses will be able to make small transactions with the Russian Federal Security Service, an intelligence agency.LEARN MORE
President Trump's national security adviser reportedly spoke about sanctions with the Russian ambassador the day new sanctions were issued.
There are some new questions about a conversation President Trump's national security adviser had with Russia before assuming his position. We already knew Gen. Michael Flynn talked with the Russian Ambassador to the U.S. on the same day the Obama administration imposed new U.S. sanctions against Russia.
That alone left the Trump administration on the defensive.
"It was strictly coincidental that they had a conversation. They did not discuss anything having to do with the United States' decision to expel diplomats or impose censure against Russia," then Vice President-elect Mike Pence told CBS' "Face the Nation" in an interview that aired Jan. 15.
The Post, citing unnamed U.S. officials, says there's no indication Flynn made any promises to the ambassador. But even talking about the sanctions may have violated an over 200-year-old U.S. law.
Under the Logan Act, it is illegal for U.S. citizens to engage in a dialogue with foreign governments with an intent to influence their decisions without the U.S. government's permission. Few people have ever been prosecuted for violating the Logan Act. And according to the Times, it's unlikely Flynn will be.
The Post said Flynn denied Wednesday discussing sanctions with the ambassador during their conversation in January. But the next day, Flynn's spokesperson seemed to walk back the remarks, telling the Post, Flynn "indicated that while he had no recollection of discussing sanctions, he couldn't be certain that the topic never came up."
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