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Russian pop star’s interview with VICE throws Trump Jr. testimony into further doubt

In an interview with VICE, Russian pop star Emin Agalarov revealed that he spoke with Donald Trump Jr. over the phone before an infamous June 2016 Trump Tower meeting. The meeting was reportedly arranged, as Trump Jr. himself has admitted, so that a Russian lawyer could share damaging information on Hillary Clinton, who was President Donald Trump’s opponent in the 2016 election.

“I said, ‘Listen, there’s some people that want to meet you,’” Agalarov said of the call. “’They obviously want something that could potentially help them resolve things that you could be interested in or maybe not. If you can spare a few minutes of your time, I’d be grateful. If not, no problem.’”

According to Agalarov, Trump Jr. then accepted the proposal. Obviously Don Jr. obviously being Don Jr. said, ‘Of course. I’ll do it if you’re asking,’” Agalarov told VICE in an interview that will air Tuesday night on HBO at 7:30 P.M. EST.

Agalarov also told VICE he was the one to suggest the June 9, 2016 meeting to Trump Jr., claiming he did so at the request of his father, Aras Agalarov. But he denies knowing Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer who attended the eventual meeting.

This interview presents a big problem for Trump Jr. As the Washington Post notes, the president’s son testified before Congress that he did not recall speaking with Agalarov.

Trump Jr. stated in September 7, 2017 testimony to Congress that “My phone records show three very short phone calls between Emin and me between June 6th and 7th. I do not recall speaking to Emin. It is possible that we left each other voice mail messages. I simply do not remember.”

Lying to Congress is a crime, and Agalarov’s claim certainly does not make Trump Jr.’s already shaky congressional testimony look good.

Meanwhile, in a Tuesday interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos, Agalarov was much less forthcoming about his conversations with the president’s son. He also repeatedly dodged Stephanopoulos’ questions about whether he would be target of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, simply saying that he hasn’t spoken with Mueller.

Agalarov would, however, like everyone to know that at last, finally” his new single, “Got Me Good,” is out.

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