Donald Trump 'knew about Michael Flynn's phone call with Russian ambassador after it happened'

Fox News Chief White House Correspondent John Roberts reports that Mr Trump was fully briefed on the content of the discussion between General Flynn and Mr Kislyak

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The Independent US

Donald Trump was reportedly fully aware that his former national security adviser had spoken with a Russian envoy after the conversation took place.  

Retired General Michael Flynn was forced to resign from the role after it emerged that, before taking his post, he had spoken to Sergey Kislyak, Moscow’s ambassador to the US, about the issue of sanctions before taking office. 

It is illegal for a private citizen to conduct diplomacy on behalf of the US.

The retired general had previously denied sanctions were discussed during the conversation - a claim he repeated during private talks with Vice President Mike Pence.

Mr Pence then relayed that information to members of the media.  

Mr Trump defended General Flynn, during a fiery and wide-ranging news conference, saying he "did nothing wrong", before blasting the media for their reporting on the scandal.

The President said that he "was doing his job. He was calling countries".

He added: "I didn't direct him, but I would have directed him if he didn't do it." 

However, Fox News Chief White House Correspondent John Roberts has now claimed that Mr Trump was fully briefed on the content of the discussion between General Flynn and Mr Kislyak.

“Under repeated questioning during an investigation conducted by the White House Counsel’s office, General Flynn – I’m told – had a full recollection of what he talked about with the Russian ambassador,” Mr Roberts said.

Mr Roberts added that General Flynn he was “100 per cent sure” of the content of the conversations and recalled the details to the White House Counsel’s office, which then told Mr Trump.

“The President was in fact fully briefed," he said, adding, "by people who would know what the content of those phone conversations was". 

Donald Trump says 'the leaks are real, the news is fake' in response to Michael Flynn resignation

Intelligence organisations have also come under increased pressure to reveal more about the Trump team's contact with Russia from Democrats in Congress.

House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, is among a group pushing for a “comprehensive briefing” on the exchanges. 

They are seeking transcripts of the intercepted phone calls between General Flynn and the Russian envoy.

Democrats are also demanding that Mr Trump’s choice of Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, stand down from a reported internal inquiry into contact between the US President's campaign and Russia.