Carter Page, who served as a foreign policy adviser to Donald Trump during his presidential campaign, has turned up in the most predictable of places, Moscow. Page told Sputnik that “I will be meeting with business leaders and thought leaders.”
Besides Page’s oddly timed visit to Moscow, Russian wires are calling Carter Page “an adviser to President Elect Trump”, not an ex-adviser even though he left the campaign on September 25th. Page abruptly vacated the Trump campaign amid allegations, first reported by Yahoo News, that the U.S. government had received intelligence reports that Page met with Igor Diveykin and Igor Sechina.
Igor Diveykin is a high–ranking Russian intelligence official “believed by the U.S. to have the responsibility of intelligence collected by Russian agencies about the U.S. election.” Igor Sechin is an ally of Russian President Valdimir Putin and is CEO of Rosneft, an oil company majority owned by the Russian Government. Sechin is also currently under U.S. sanctions for his involvement during Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine in 2014, which makes it illegal for Americans to conduct business with him. The Yahoo article alleged that Page had “talks about the possible lifting of economic sanctions if the Republican nominee becomes president.”
It’s probably a safe assumption at this point that Carter Page, at least, would argue these meetings are on an informal basis. The Russian Foreign Ministry said there were no plans right now to meet with Page.Nonetheless, Carter Page is in Moscow to meet and greet in Donald Trump’s name, according to Russian state-owned media. Sputnik, the state-owned news site, hinted broadly that Page would be likely to be meeting with the Russian government. It said:
“I will be meeting with business leaders and thought leaders,” Page, who used to work with Russian energy giant Gazprom, said.
“Thought leaders” is a broad definition, which may include government officials or people close to the establishment.
Sputnik’s article called Carter Page an “adviser” to Donald Trump, using the present tense in its headline. Page agreed to talk to Sputnik, who quote their comment from him in their short piece.
Trump’s Adviser Arrives in Moscow to Meet With Businessmen, ‘Thought Leaders’
Page told Sputnik he is staying in Moscow until December 13th.