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New emails show links between State Dept, Clinton Foundation

A conservative group says Hillary, as Secretary of State, did favours for donors and staff of the Clinton Foundation

world Updated: Aug 10, 2016 08:56 IST
Hillary Clinton, the Democratic presidential nominee, has denied favouring donors and staff of the Clinton Foundation when she was Secretary of State. (NYT)

A new set of 44 emails released by a conservative watch dog have thrown light on how top officials from the Clinton Foundation sought access to the State Department when Hillary Clinton served as the Secretary of State in the first term of the Obama Administration.

According to the email exchanges spread over 296 pages, officials of the Clinton Foundation not only sought to get job opportunities in the State Department, but also the help of in getting meetings with foreign government, alleged Judicial Watch which obtained these emails through Freedom of Information Act.

The new documents reveal that in April 2009 controversial Clinton Foundation official Doug Band pushed for a job for an associate, the Judicial Watch said.

In the email Band tells Hillary Clinton’s former aides at the State Department Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin that it is “important to take care of [Redacted].

Band is reassured by Abedin that “Personnel has been sending him options.”

Band was co-founder of Teneo Strategy with Bill Clinton and a top official of the Clinton Foundation, including its Clinton Global Initiative, it said.

Included in the new document production is a 2009 email in which Band, directs Abedin and Mills to put Lebanese-Nigerian billionaire and Clinton Foundation donor Gilbert Chagoury in touch with the State Department’s “substance person” on Lebanon.

Band notes that Chagoury is “key guy there [Lebanon] and to us,” and insists that Abedin call ambassador Jeffrey Feltman to connect him to Chagoury.

Chagoury is a close friend of former US President Bill Clinton and a top donor to the Clinton Foundation, Judicial Watch said.

He has appeared near the top of the Foundation’s donor list as a USD 1 million to USD 5 million contributor, according to foundation documents.

He also pledged USD 1 billion to the Clinton Global Initiative.

According to a 2010 investigation by PBS Frontline, Chagoury was convicted in 2000 in Switzerland for laundering money from Nigeria, but agreed to a plea deal and repaid USD 66 million to the Nigerian government, Judicial Watch alleged.

“Clinton’s top aides’ favors for and interactions with the Clinton Foundation seem in violation of the ethics agreements that Hillary Clinton agreed to in order to be appointed and confirmed as Secretary of State,” it said.

As preparation for Hillary’s upcoming visit to Asia, Stephen Roach, chairman of Morgan Stanley Asia, on February 11, 2009, sends Hillary a copy of his upcoming testimony before Congress in which he would condemn any US efforts to criticise Chinese monetary policy or enact trade barriers.

Several days later, Hillary asked Abedin about Roach possibly “connecting” with her while she was in Beijing: “I forwarded you my email to him about connecting in Beijing. Can he come to the embassy or other event?” Morgan Stanley is a long-time financial supporter of the Clintons, the Judicial Watch said.

First Published: Aug 10, 2016 08:50 IST