‘Trump aide spoke with Russian envoy in December’

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Washington: Michael Flynn, US President-elect Donald Trump's pick for national security adviser, took a phone call last month from Russia's ambassador to the US, Trump's spokesman said on Friday.

The call between Flynn and Sergey Kislyak on December 28 “centred around the logistics of setting up a call with the President of Russia and the President-elect after he was sworn in and they exchanged logistically information on how to initiate and schedule that call,” Xinhua quoted Sean Spicer as saying. The spokesman also said Flynn and Kislyak exchanged greetings during the Christmas holidays prior to the call.

The contacts between the Russian envoy and Trump’s top aide came around the time US President Barack Obama announced on December 29 tough sanctions against Russian entities and individuals over alleged hacking during the 2016 US presidential election.

Russian President Vladimir Putin decided not to retaliate against the sanctions a move that Trump praised as “very smart.”

Trump, who has called for improving US-Russia relations, on Wednesday conceded for the first time that Russia was behind cyberattacks during the presidential election.

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