Kushner Denies Russian Collusion Ahead of Closed-door Congressional Testimony Today

Amidst efforts to ease Mideast tensions following the Temple Mount crisis, Kushner will meet the Senate and House intel committees on Monday and Tuesday

File photo: White House Senior Advisor Jared Kushner listens during President Donald Trump's joint news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel White House in Washington, U.S. on March 17, 2017.
JIM BOURG/REUTERS

WASHINGTON - Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, will meet on Monday with members of the Senate Intelligence Committee to discuss the ongoing investigation into Russia's involvement in the 2016 U.S. election. Kushner will meet with the committee members behind closed doors, and will not be under oath during the discussion, according to multiple reports published on Sunday night. After the meeting on Monday, Kushner will also meet behind closed doors with the House of Representatives' Intelligence Committee on Tuesday. 

Kushner was one of the Trump campaign officials who participated in a June 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer who, according to emails uncovered by the New York Times, offered to give the Trump campaign "dirt" on Hillary Clinton, the Democratic candidate in the 2016 election. Kushner did not mention the meeting when filing paperwork for obtaining his security clearance. He also failed to mention meetings with Russian officials, including Russia's former ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak. 

>> Jared Kushner's Full Statement on Alleged Russian Collusion to the U.S. Congress

Kushner says the meeting with a Russian-American lawyer was such a "waste of time" that he asked his assistant to call him out of the gathering.

That's according to a statement Jared Kushner is provided to congressional committees this week.

Emails released this month show Donald Trump Jr. accepted the meeting at Trump Tower with the idea that he would receive damaging information about Hillary Clinton. But Kushner now says he hadn't seen those emails until recently shown them by his lawyers.

Kushner says in his statement that Trump Jr. invited him to the meeting. He says he arrived late and heard the lawyer discussing the issue of adoptions. He says he texted his assistant to call him out of the meeting.

 Kusher also says he never colluded with any foreign government during the presidential campaign. He also is denying that Russians finance any of his business in the private sector.

Kushner is disclosing the information in an 11-page statement provided to The Associated Press. The release of the statement comes just hours before he is to be interviewed by a Senate committee investigating Russia's meddling in the 2016 election and any possible collusion by Trump associates.

The meetings with the Senate and House committees come at a time when Kushner is involved with trying to calm down tensions in the Middle East, which broke out after Israeli-Arab citizens stabbed two Israeli policemen to death on Temple Mount on July 14th. Kushner spoke on the phone last week with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in an attempt to find a solution to the Temple Mount crisis and is overseeing the administration's efforts on the issue, which include a visit to Israel today by Trump's special envoy for the peace process, Jason Greenblatt. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report