Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Wednesday defended Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya by saying that criticism of the meeting was “wild.”
In a statement made during a visit in Brussels, as reported by The Straits Times, Lavrov said it was ridiculous to criticize Trump Jr. for the meeting, which was pitched to him as part of an effort from the Russian government to help his father’s presidential campaign.
“I learned with surprise that a Russian lawyer, a women, is being blamed and Trump’s son is being blamed for meeting,” Lavrov said. “For me, this is wild. Because when any person speaks to a lawyer, what problem or threat could be there? I didn’t know about this, I learned about it from television.”
Lavrov also attacked American media outlets for their coverage of the encounter between Trump Jr. and Veselnitskaya.
“It is amazing how serious people can make a mountain out of a molehill, so to speak,” he said. “Maybe there is no molehill there.”
Trump Jr. on Tuesday morning released email correspondence that he had with music publicist Rob Goldstone, who offered to set up a meeting between the eldest Trump son and Veselnitskaya to discuss potentially damaging information about Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
The emails, which Trump Jr. apparently released because they were about to be published by the New York Times, reveal that he knew that Veselnitskaya was being sent to talk with him in Trump Tower in New York as part of a broader effort by the Russian government to help his father’s presidential campaign.