President Donald Trump's former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, said Friday that he is cooperating with the Office of the Special Counsel in its ongoing investigation into alleged ties between Russia and the Trump campaign after he pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russian officials.
Flynn, a retired Army general, pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of making false statements to the FBI about his interactions with Russian Ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak in late December 2016 concerning sanctions Washington imposed on Moscow and a vote in the U.N. Security Council that was seen as damaging to Israel.
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Noting his 33-plus years of military service, Flynn said in a statement following his guilty plea that "it has been extraordinarily painful to endure these many months of false accusations of ‘treason' and other outrageous acts."
"But I recognize that the actions I acknowledged in court today were wrong, and through my faith in God, I am working to set things right," he added. "My guilty plea and agreement to cooperate with the Special Counsel's Office reflect a decision I made in the best interests of my family and of our country. I accept full responsibility for my actions."
FLYNN statement: "It has been extraordinarily painful to endure these many months of false accusations of ‘treason’" pic.twitter.com/xBuPECn0dw
— Rebecca Ballhaus (@rebeccaballhaus) December 1, 2017
White House lawyer Ty Cobb released his own statement shortly after Flynn, saying that Flynn's guilty plea only implicates himself and no one in Trump's White House.
"Nothing about the guilty plea or the charge implicates anyone other than Mr. Flynn," Cobb said. "The conclusion of this phase of the Special Counsel's work demonstrates again that the Special Counsel is moving with all deliberate speed and clears the way for a prompt and reasonable conclusion."
WHITE HOUSE STATEMENT: "Nothing about the guilty plea or the charge implicates anyone other than Mr. Flynn." pic.twitter.com/LaL9ta967u
— Chris Geidner (@chrisgeidner) December 1, 2017
Flynn was fired from his White House post in February for misleading Vice President Mike Pence about his conversations with the Russian ambassador.