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The questions Robert Mueller wants to ask Donald Trump about Russia

Special counsel Robert Mueller has given a list of almost four dozen questions to President Donald Trump's lawyers as part of his investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and whether Mr Trump obstructed justice, according to a report in The New York Times.

The Times obtained a list of the questions, which range from Mr Trump's motivations for firing former FBI director James Comey a year ago to contacts Mr Trump's campaign had with Russians.

Although Mr Mueller's team has indicated to Mr Trump's lawyers he is not considered a target, investigators remain interested in whether the US President's actions constitute an obstruction of justice and want to interview him about several episodes in office.

The lawyers want to resolve the investigation as quickly as possible, but there is no agreement on how to do that.

Queries on Trump campaign links with Kremlin

Many of the questions obtained by The Times focus on the obstruction issue, including Mr Trump's angry criticism of Attorney-General Jeff Sessions' recusal from the Russia investigation.

Mr Trump's lawyer Jay Sekulow declined to comment, as did White House lawyer Ty Cobb.

The questions also touch on the Russian meddling and whether the Trump campaign coordinated with the Kremlin in any way.

In one question obtained by The Times, Mr Mueller asks what Mr Trump knew about campaign staff — including his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort — reaching out to Moscow.

Mr Mueller has brought several charges against Mr Manafort, but none are for any crimes related to Russian election interference during the 2016 campaign.

And he has denied having anything to do with such an effort.

The queries also touch on Mr Trump's businesses and his discussions with his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, about a possible Moscow real estate deal.

Mr Cohen's business dealings are part of a separate FBI investigation.

Questions over connections with people in Russia

One question asks what discussions Mr Trump may have had regarding "any meeting with [Russian President Vladimir Putin]".

Another question asks what the President may have known about a possible attempt by his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to set up a back channel with Russia before Mr Trump's inauguration.

Additional questions centre on Michael Flynn, Mr Trump's former national security adviser, who has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his discussions on sanctions against Russia with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the presidential transition. Mr Flynn is now cooperating with Mr Mueller's investigators.

"What did you know about phone calls that Mr Flynn made with the Russian ambassador, Sergey I Kislyak, in late December 2016?" reads one question.

Another asks if there were any efforts to reach out to Mr Flynn, "about seeking immunity or possible pardon".

Mr Flynn was fired on February 13, 2017, after White House officials said he had misled them about his Russian contacts during the transition period by saying he had not discussed sanctions.

The following day, according to memos written by Mr Comey, Mr Trump cleared the Oval Office of other officials and encouraged Mr Comey to drop the investigation into Mr Flynn.

AP

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