Prior to collecting a $500,000 payday in Moscow in 2010, Bill Clinton asked for clearance from the State Department to meet with a key board director of the Russian nuclear energy firm Rosatom.
Government records show that Rosatom, at the time, needed the Obama administration’s approval for a controversial uranium deal.
An email from May 14, 2010, listed Arkady Dvorkovich, a top aide to former Russian President Dmitri Medvedev, and one of the highest-ranking government officials to serve on Rosatom’s board of supervisors as one of 15 Russians that Bill Clinton wanted to meet during a late June 2010 trip.
“In the context of a possible trip to Russia at the end of June, WJC is being asked to see the business/government folks below. Would State have concerns about WJC seeing any of these folks,” Clinton Foundation foreign policy adviser Amitabh Desai wrote the State Department on May 14, 2010, using the former president’s initials and forwarding the list of names to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s team.
The email was sent to Jake Sullivan and Cheryl Mills, two of Hillary Clinton’s top advisers.
The approval question, however, sat inside State for nearly two weeks without an answer, prompting Desai to make multiple pleas for a decision.
After two weeks without an answer, Sullivan finally responded on June 7, 2010, asking a fellow State official “What’s the deal w this?”
The documents didn’t indicate what the State Department’s final decision was, but current and former aides to both Clintons told The Hill on Thursday that other people requested to meet with various Russians. The State reportedly decided not to hold any of the meetings with the Russians on the list.
Bill Clinton, instead, met with Vladimir Putin at Putin’s private homestead.
Clinton’s former spokesperson, Angel Urena told the Hill, “Requests of this type were run by the State Department as a matter of course. This was yet another one of those instances. Ultimately, President Clinton did not meet with these people.”
Hillary Clinton was just returning from Moscow, as there were raising concerns about the appearance of her husband meeting with officials so soon after.
There were also two of the Russians on the former president’s list that had pending business that would be intersecting with State.
The first was Dvorkovich, who was a chief deputy to Medvedev and one of the Russian nuclear power industry’s cheerleaders.
Approval of the deal meant that control of 20 percent of U.S. uranium production would be shifting to the Russian-owned Rosatom’s control.
The Hill reported earlier this week that the FBI had uncovered evidence that Russian nuclear officials were engaged in a massive bribery scheme before CFIUS approved the deal, raising questions in Congress and drawing attention from President Trump.
President Trump said, “Uranium is the real Russia story,” accusing news media of ignoring the new developments reported in The Hill.
The second person on the list that caught attention was Russian businessman Viktor Vekselberg.
Hillary Clinton had directly discussed the Skolkovo project, a new technology investment that was designed to be Russia’s new Silicon Valley, with Medvedev.
Her State Department was gaining support for it among U.S. companies, creating the potential appearance of a conflict. She even attended a major event with the Russians in 2010 to promote the project.
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