Devin Nunes, a California congressman who chairs the House of Representatives’ intelligence committee, said on Friday that Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort had volunteered to be interviewed by that committee as part of its probe into Russia’s interference in the presidential election.
“Yesterday, the counsel for Paul Manafort contacted the committee yesterday to offer the committee the opportunity to interview his client,” Mr Nunes, said. “We thank Mr Manafort for volunteering and encourage others with knowledge of these issues to voluntarily interview with the committee.” He added that Mr Manafort is welcome to a public hearing or a closed setting.
Mr Manafort’s business deal with a Russian billionaire have amplified scrutiny of the Trump campaign and administration’s ties with Moscow. A report from the Associated Press citing leaked documents suggested that Mr Manafort was hired by industrial tycoon Oleg Deripaska to promote Russian president Vladimir Putin’s interests.
President Donald Trump has faced criticism over his administration’s ties to Russia after it was revealed that Michael Flynn, his first national security adviser, lied about the nature of conversations he had held with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador. Last month, Mr Trump’s attorney-general Jeff Sessions had to recuse himself from Russia-related investigations after it emerged that he had misled Congress about meetings he held with the Russian ambassador to Washington.