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U.S. Senate Committee Withdraws Manafort Subpoena; No Public Testimony

U.S. President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort (file photo)

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee late on July 25 withdrew its subpoena compelling President Donald Trump's former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, to testify, saying he has begun cooperating.

Manafort earlier in the day was served a subpoena to appear before the committee in public on July 26, but the subpoena was retracted when he agreed to start providing the committee with documents that might shed light on the committee's investigation into alleged Russian interference in last year's presidential election, committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (Republican-Iowa) said.

The committee is now negotiating with Manafort over a possible "transcribed interview" in place of public testimony, Grassley said.

Manafort, who had business ties with ousted pro-Russia Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, is at the center of several Washington investigations into possible ties between Russia and Trump's campaign.

"It's important that he and other witnesses continue to work with this committee as it fulfills its oversight responsibility," Grassley said with ranking Democratic committee member Dianne Feinstein in a joint statement.

"As we've said before, we intend to get the answers that we need, one way or the other. Cooperation from witnesses is always the preferred route, but this agreement does not prejudice the committee's right to compel his testimony in the future."

Manafort stepped down as Trump's election campaign chief in August 2016 after revelations in Kyiv that he had received large payments linked to Ukraine's former pro-Russian government.

Jared Kushner (file photo)
Jared Kushner (file photo)

Meanwhile, Trump's son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner returned to Capitol Hill for a second day of private meetings on July 25.

His talks with U.S. lawmakers involved a closed-door conversation with members of the House Intelligence Committee.

Both Manafort and Kushner have faced scrutiny about attending a June 2016 meeting with Russian officials at the Trump Tower in New York because it was described in e-mails to the president's son, Donald Trump Jr., as part of a Russian government effort to aid Trump's presidential campaign.

On July 24, Kushner answered questions from staff on the Senate's intelligence panel about his contacts with Russian officials.

Kushner acknowledged four meetings with Russians during and after Trump's presidential election campaign but insisted he had "nothing to hide” -- saying "all of my actions were proper."

With reporting by Reuters, AP, and AFP

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