Federal Bureau of Investigation warned Kushner on Murdoch's ex-wife

US officials warned Kushner about friendship with Wendi Deng Murdoch report

The twist: the country in question is China, not Russian Federation.

Murdoch, a US citizen, was married to News Corp executive chairman Rupert Murdoch from 1999 until their divorce in 2013.

Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of President Donald J. Trump and one of his senior advisers, was warned by counterintelligence officials previous year that the former wife of media mogul Rupert Murdoch might be using her close friendship with Kushner and his wife, Ivank, to help push the agenda of the Chinese government, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

Murdoch is the former wife of conservative media mogul Rupert Murdoch, both of whom have ties to the Trumps.

Among the US officials' concerns was the prospect that Murdoch was lobbying for a massive $100 million construction project in Washington, D.C. that they feared could be used for surveillance by Chinese operatives. He added that she "has absolutely no knowledge of any garden projects funded by the Chinese government".


The Journal said intelligence officials consider it a national security risk because it features a 70-foot (21-meter) tower that could be used for surveillance.

The outlet notes that no one has been accused of wrongdoing, but said officials gave the warning "to highlight to Mr. Kushner, who was new to government, the need to be careful in his dealings with people whose interests may not align with those of the U.S". Sources suggested it was part of a broader effort by national security officials to alert Kushner to the fact that some of his contacts may be pushing foreign interests.

A spokesman said Wendi Deng Murdoch "has no knowledge of any Federal Bureau of Investigation concerns or other intelligence agency concerns relating to her or her associations", and denied she was aware of the garden project.

Among U.S. officials' reported concerns was a proposed garden in Washington, D.C., funded by the Chinese government.

The Chinese Embassy in D.C. told the Journal that the report was "full of groundless speculations". At the time, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said there was reason to be watchful about Ms. Murdoch, but that they hadn't looked into her in detail, the person said.

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