- The Washington Times - Monday, October 9, 2017

A new email between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer attending the now-notorious July 2016 meeting at Trump Tower in Manhattan contradicts previous accounts that they gathered to exchange political dirt on Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

The new email, which surfaced on Monday, asserts that Natalia Veselnitskaya believed she was meeting President Trump’s eldest son to discuss the Magnitsky Act — a 2012 sanctions law created in response to Russian human rights violations, which is opposed by the Kremlin.

The Russian lawyer has repeatedly claimed this was her reason for meeting with Mr. Trump Jr. at the height of the 2016 presidential election.

The new email contradicts previously released email exchanges between Donald Trump Jr. and meeting organizer Rob Goldstone, a music industry publicist, which suggested Ms. Veselnitskaya had damaging information about Ms. Clinton the Russian government wanted to pass along to the Trump campaign.

The new email was made public by Scott Balber, a U.S. lawyer representing Aras Agalarov, the Russian billionaire who hosted the Trump-owned Miss Universe pageant in Moscow in 2013 and who had helped secure the July Trump Tower meeting for Ms. Veselnitskaya.

Mr. Balber reportedly said he released Ms. Veselnitskaya’s email because he believed it supports her claim the meeting had nothing to do with any Kremlin effort to assist the Trump campaign — despite what the music publicist had previously written.

The newly released email offers no conclusive evidence about why Mr. Trump Jr. accepted the meeting with Russians as his father prepared to accept the Republican nomination for president.

Mr. Trump Jr. had reacted enthusiastically when told over email by Mr. Goldstone that Mr. Agalarov had met with a top prosecutor in Russia and been provided incriminating information about Ms. Clinton that the Russian lawyer would convey.

“If it’s what you say, I love it,” Trump Jr. wrote.

Multiple congressional probes investigating Russian election meddling are scrutinizing the July Trump Tower meeting.

This story is based in part on wire service reports.

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