Trump allegations: what’s happening and what are the claims?

Q&A explainer of the latest controversy surrounding Donald Trump

US president-elect Donald Trump at Trump Tower on  Monday. Photograph: AP/Evan Vucci

US president-elect Donald Trump at Trump Tower on Monday. Photograph: AP/Evan Vucci

 

What’s happening?

US president-elect Donald Trump will hold his first planned press conference since July last year ahead of his inauguration on January 20th. US president Barack Obama made an emotional farewell speech overnight that sought to comfort and encourage a country on edge over economic changes, persistent security threats and the election of Donald Trump.

What’s all the fuss about the Donald Trump and Russia?

Earlier this month US intelligence agencies said in an assessment that Russian president Vladimir Putin ordered an effort to help Trump’s electoral chances by discrediting Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential campaign.

It was reported on Wednesday that as part of the briefing on Russian attempts to influence the election, US spy chiefs included a two-page summary of memos. The memos are said to have been compiled by a former British intelligence operative about alleged Kremlin operations to gather prejudicial information on Trump and Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

Media outlets were unable to verify the details in the memos and both Russia and Trump dismissed them as being fabricated. BuzzFeed later published the entire 35-page compilation of memos, which contain potentially damaging but uncorroborated information about Trump and his associates.

What are the central allegations?

One report, dated June 2016, claims the Kremlin has been cultivating, supporting and assisting Mr Trump for at least five years, with the aim of encouraging “splits and divisions in western alliance”.

The memo also claims that Mr Trump had declined “various sweetener real estate deals offered him in Russia” especially in developments linked to the 2018 World Cup finals but that “he and his inner circle have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals.”

Most explosively, the report alleges: “FSB has compromised Trump through his activities in Moscow sufficiently to be able to blackmail him.” The memos describe sex videos involving prostitutes with Mr Trump in a 2013 visit to a Moscow hotel. The videos were supposedly prepared as “kompromat,” or compromising material, with the possible goal of blackmailing Mr Trump in the future.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.