Russian spokesman Dmitry Peskov told NBC News there was contact from former Trump attorney Michael Cohen about a planned Trump Tower in Moscow.
Cohen pleaded guilty last week to lying to Congress about the proposed project and said discussions continued into June 2016 during Trump’s presidential campaign — but is it much ado about nothing?
More from NBC News:
But Russian officials gave the exchanges no more attention than any other business proposition, spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Argentina.
Peskov told NBC News in an interview that “every week dozens and dozens of foreign businessmen are approaching us, mentioning possible investments, searching for contacts.”
He said Trump representatives ceased contact with the Russians.
It would appear that being unable to nail the president on so-called “collusion,” special counsel Robert Mueller is mulling over Trump’s business dealings after Cohen flipped.
But Peskov said the contact, which amounted to “two emails and one telephone call, returned telephone call,” came to nothing and that Trump representatives ended the communication.
He said after telling the representative that the Russian administration does not deal with construction works,” contact stopped and “they did disappear.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s press secretary told NBC “every week dozens and dozens of foreign businessmen are approaching us, mentioning possible investments, searching for contacts.”
“For us, it’s not different,” Peskov said. “For you, it’s a future President Trump. For us, it’s one of the other applicants.”
When asked about skeptics who might find it hard to believe that the contact came to nothing, Peskov shrugged it off.
“This is not our struggle, it’s their struggle,” he said. “We wish them success.”
Trump called Cohen “a weak person,” telling reporters Thursday outside the White House that his former personal attorney was “lying to get a reduced sentence.”
He also said that “everybody knew” about the project.
“He put out a statement talking about a project which was essentially, you guess, more or less of an option that we were looking at in Moscow,” President Trump said. “Everybody knew about it. It was written about in newspapers. It was a well-known project. It was during the early part of ‘16 and I guess even before that.”
“I didn’t do the project,’ he added. “I decided not to do the project, so I didn’t do it.”
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