Published: Fri, May 12, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Official photos of Oval Office meet leave out Russian ambassador


The comment comes after Wednesday's meeting of US President Donald Trump in the White House with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador in Washington, D.C., Sergey Kislyak.

Who could have foreseen that this would go badly? However, a camera-wielding member of the Russian delegation "described... as Lavrov's official photographer" was granted access to the Oval Office.

Journalists typically cover portions of meetings between the president and heads of state or government.

Scherbak said his post - addressed to USA media - was prompted by "this hysteria around my photo shoot at the White House".

Russian officials have repeatedly denied election meddling, characterizing the allegations as absurd and meant to deflect public opinion from revealed instances of corruption and other pressing domestic concerns. Ambassadors often accompany visiting dignitaries to the White House.

Reports say Comey infuriated Trump by refusing the President's demand to preview his recent testimony before a Senate committee, and by not exonerating him in the continuing Russian Federation probe. But people like Chuck Schumer reportedly warned him even before he'd notified Comey that this wasn't going to play politically the way he thought it was going to play.

In addition, Kislyak was brought into the Trump Tower in New York in December out of the sight of reporters for a meeting with Flynn and Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and now senior advisor, according to The New York Times.

Former Deputy Director of the FBI, David Cohen, had a short answer to the question: "Was this a good idea?"

Many on social media called the move to allow Russian media into the Oval Office unwise. He declined to elaborate when reached by phone. The meeting inside the White House in Washington, on Wednesday, May 10, is causing all sorts of security concerns after President Trump welcomed the top diplomat to Vladimir Putin inside the Oval Office, representing President Trump's highest level face-to-face meeting with Russian big wigs since President Trump took the Oval Office in January. And Michele, how did you get the news of what happened in the Oval Office? Did Trump say anything that might embarrass him if audio should mysteriously emerge later?

The confusion, it appears, came in the White House's understanding of the Russian photographers' specific role. In theory, Trump's now in the same position.

Former KGB spy Jack Barsky said that White House security was breached "to some extent". That's the problem with the Russians.

However, an administration official told the Washington Post that White House rooms are "swept routinely" for listening devices.

Seems like a moment Russian government officials savored, no?

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