Jared Kushner Russia-back-channel diplomacy: Is it legal?

Jared Kushner reported, try to have a “back-channel” between Russia and Donald Trump’s presidential transition team, a point of contention, even if such discussions are not uncommon.

Here’s what you should know about back-channel diplomacy.

What back-channel diplomacy?

It refers to the informal, but direct, high-level communication that bypass formal channels. Such discussions can help governments, work through problems and to reduce the stresses in the lower pressure settings.

What Kushner was?

Kushner, the Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak spoke about the opening of a line of communication to explore options for the new administration, a Syria policy designed, according to a person familiar with the discussions. The goal is a connection to Michael Flynn, Trump’s then-chief of the national security adviser, the Russian military was. In Syria civil war, Russia supports Assad while the United States rebels supported anti-Assad.

Kushner allegedly proposed, with Russian diplomatic facilities for the discussions, apparently, in order to monitor them more difficult, according to a report. Flynn came never to speak with Russian institutions, Moscow, US officials said.

What about the connection between Kushner with the public relations?

Kushner’s outreach, a time of alleged Russian interference in the US election, the fed accusations by the Trump-campaign agreements, which investigated the FBI.

Contacts between the transition team and foreign diplomats are “normal,” Eliot Cohen, a veteran of George W. Bush ‘ s State Department, tweeted. “What’s not normal,” he added, “asks a hostile government, to prevent secure communication, the FBI/NSA surveillance.”

1/ Unusual, I do not agree. Contacts between the transition team and foreign diplomats is, in fact, completely normal. What is not normal though…

— Eliot A Cohen (@EliotACohen) May 28, 2017

2/ ask a hostile government, to prevent secure communication, and to do FBI/NSA surveillance, to what, exactly. The right line…

— Eliot A Cohen (@EliotACohen) May 28, 2017

3/ is just ‘happy to hear what you have to say to us, but we have one President at a time.’ I was on Romney’s team & that was our plan. At the END of

— Eliot A Cohen (@EliotACohen) May 28, 2017

“What kind of ignorance, chaos, hubris, mistrust, contempt, you would have to think that this is asked with the Russian Ambassador was a good or appropriate idea?” the former CIA-chief Michael Hayden, on CNN. Back-channels are said right, Hayden, “but you don’t do it, if you are not the government, and I do not believe that you are there with your adversary to the communications system.”

Is it legal?

Kushner contacts revived talk that the Logan Act prohibits U.S. citizens are trying to influence with a foreign government in disputes with the U.S. The act was so rare that legal experts say that it may no longer be valid. No one has ever been found guilty of violating it.

Have other presidents used back-channel communication?

Yes. The Obama administration approved by months of secret meetings between U.S. and Iranian officials to clinch a temporary 2013 nuclear business.

Back-channel diplomacy with Cuba extends about the secret talks lead to re, Obama’s 2014 approval to establish diplomatic relations back to the Cuban missile crisis of 1962, when John F. Kennedy was President.

President Richard Nixon used several back-channels for the interaction with the Soviet Union.

What is back-channel communication in times of transition?

To take Nixon’s two rear channels to the Soviets during the period of waiting, by President Lyndon B. Johnson, said U.S. Naval College professor Richard Moss was.

It’s allegations of back-channel talks between aides in the vicinity of the Republicans Ronald Reagan and the Iran in 1980, in the midst of the U.S. negotiations for the release of the American hostages in Iran. Reagan denied such a parallel speaks. The hostages hours after his 1981 inauguration were freed.

Obama was not averse to informal diplomatic channels prior to his election in 2008. Foreign policy Advisor Daniel Kurtzer met with the Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad has been Federal Minister for foreign Affairs, the summer and the Obama campaign stressed Kurtzer was not a paid consultant or authorized talks with a government. Obama’s rival, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) criticized the public relations. McCain is now speaking to the concerns about Kushner proposed back-channel.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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