‘UAE paid businessman to spy on Trump administration’
12, Jun 2019
Prelims level : Mains level :
- A UAE businessman linked to a probe of illegal donations to Donald Trump’s political campaign was paid by his country’s intelligence agency to spy on the U.S. President’s administration.
- Rashid al-Malik received tens of thousands of dollars a month for gleaning information on Trump administration policy toward West Asia in 2017.
- UAE’s National Intelligence Service on topics of interest to the oil-producing Gulf state including U.S. efforts to mediate a Gulf feud involving Qatar as well as meetings between U.S. officials and Saudi Arabia’s powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
- Late last year, The New York Times and Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. federal prosecutors were investigating whether foreigners illegally funnelled donations to Mr. Trump’s inaugural committee and a pro-Trump fundraising super PAC.
- Al-Malik, chairman of the investment firm Hayah Holdings, was interviewed by special counsel Robert Muller’s office as part of the probe, according to the New York Times.