WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange appeared to take credit Tuesday for Donald Trump Jr.’s decision to release his emails about setting up a meeting with a Kremlin-linked lawyer.
Assange said he had contacted Trump Jr. Tuesday morning to publish the emails with WikiLeaks.
“Contacted Trump Jr this morning on why he should publish his emails (i.e with us). Two hours later, does it himself,” Assange tweeted.
Contacted Trump Jr this morning on why he should publish his emails (i.e with us). Two hours later, does it himself: https://t.co/FzCttGSyr6
— Julian Assange (@JulianAssange) July 11, 2017
Trump Jr. released the emails Tuesday after The New York Times told him they had the documents and would be reporting on them.
Assange said that he told Trump Jr. to release the documents “because his enemies have it — so why not the public?”
“Better to be transparent and have the full context,” he continued, “but would have been safer for us to publish it anonymously sourced. By publishing it himself it is easier to submit as evidence.”
The emails reveal correspondence between Trump Jr. and acquaintance Rob Goldstone as they set up a meeting with Kremlin-linked lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, who promised to share incriminating evidence on Hillary Clinton to help the Trump campaign.
“This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump,” Goldstone wrote in one email.
“If it’s what you say I love it,” Trump Jr. said in one reply, referring to the information about Clinton.
Trump Jr. said that nothing came out of the meeting and that Veselnitskaya only wanted to talk about a U.S. policy on Russian adoptions. He has denied any wrongdoing in taking the meeting, but lawmakers are now vying to get him to testify before House and Senate committees.
President Trump said in a statement Tuesday that Trump Jr. “is a high-quality person and I applaud his transparency.”