Ivanka Trump Reportedly Contacted Russian Athlete Who Offered Putin-Trump Meeting
The Russian athlete Dimitri Klokow offered Cohen to arrange a meeting between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in order to promote a real estate project of the Trump family business in Moscow, according to a new report in BuzzFeed. Cohen rejected the offer and Ivanka Trump responded angrily, according to reports. So far, Ivanka Trump’s name has rarely come up in the Russia probe.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller is examining potential collusion between Donald Trump’s campaign team and Russian officials.
Since 2006, the Trump Organization has been trying to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Cohen contacted Klokow during the election campaign in fall 2015 to enlist his help.
In April, the Justice Department announced criminal investigation of Cohen himself.
It’s unclear how Ivanka Trump came into contact with Klokow. He is a Russian weightlifter and won the 2008 silver medal at the Olympic Games. He is not known to have a background in the real estate business, nor that he has close contacts with Putin.
Klokow told BuzzFeed that he did not “send any emails” to Cohen. “I don’t understand why you ask me about this. I’m weightlifter, not a politician,” he added. When told that he had sent at least two emails to Cohen and had had a phone conversation with him at Ivanka Trump’s request, Klokov stopped responding to the reporter’s emails. It is not known if the exchange is under investigation by Congress or federal agents who are probing Russia’s election meddling.
North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr, the chair of the Intelligence Committee, told BuzzFeed, he could see how Russian athletes, like the country’s oligarchs, might be drawn into Russian politics. “I can’t speak specifically to athletes, but you see the oligarchs, and there is a model for them, and they do things on behalf of the country and on behalf of Putin at their own expense — they’re not asked, they just assume the responsibility to do it, whether that’s a mercenary army in Syria or it’s screwing with elections; whether it’s the hacking out of the St. Petersberg facility,” Burr said. “So it’s not a stretch to say if Putin allows oligarchs to make money as long as they don’t get involved in politics and they do things that are beneficial to Putin — I could see athletes falling into the same category.”