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Australia’s prime minister says Trump’s call was a “no news” talk

October 2, 2019

SYDNEY, Oct. 2 (Reuters / EP) –

The Prime Minister of Australia, Scott Morrison, has assured that the call in which the president of the United States, Donald Trump, asked him for help in an investigation into the origin of the investigations of the special prosecutor Robert Mueller around the Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential was a talk “without news”.

In an interview with Sky News, Morrison said that the telephone conversation he had with Trump in September was basically a normal, friendly and brief talk. The conversation, which took place after Morrison's official visit to the White House, was publicly revealed on Tuesday.

“The president contacted me and asked me for a point of contact between the Australian Government and the United States attorney general, something that I was happy to do based on what it was that we had already promised to do before,” said Morrison. , in his first public statement about the call with Trump that has now been called into question in the context of the controversy over the call of the US president to the Ukrainian president, Volodimir Zelenski. “It was basically a conversation without news,” he said.

On Monday, the 'The New York Times' newspaper reported Trump pressured Morrison with a call asking him to facilitate an investigation by US Attorney General William Barr that could discredit the investigation of Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller about interference Russian in the 2016 US presidential elections.

Citing two different sources familiar with the telephone conversation between Trump and Morrison, the New York newspaper said the call came in recent weeks and that Trump explicitly asked Morrison for help. Barr would have asked Trump to talk to Morrison, according to one of the sources.

Australia would have informed the US FBI that the Russian government hinted at Trump's campaign that he could publish harmful information for his rival, Hillary Clinton.

The petition assumes that Trump in practice asked Morrison to investigate the investigations initiated by the US authorities on Russian interference in the elections that led Trump to the White House.

Mueller's investigation did not find sufficient evidence to establish whether Trump and his campaign team were involved in a criminal conspiracy with Russia but cannot reach a conclusion as to whether the president had committed a crime of obstruction of justice. The document of conclusions was taken by Trump as his “total and complete exoneration,” something that Mueller rejected in his subsequent appearance at parliamentary headquarters.