United States President Donald Trump’s administration has imposed restrictions on his son-in-law and closest adviser Jared Kushner’s access to top secret White House information, reports said. Kushner lost access to top secret US intelligence reports and the president’s daily brief after the White House had his security clearance downgraded.
Kushner’s lawyer Abbe Lowell confirmed the development to US website Politico. The changes would “not affect Kushner’s ability to continue to do the very important work he has been assigned by the President,” Lowell told the news website. The president’s 37-year-old adviser is married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka.
Kushner was among several other White House aides whose background checks have still not been completed. They were so far only given interim clearance. Over the past few days, their access has been altered after chief of staff John Kelly asked for changes in the security clearance system, CNN reported. Kushner has not received his full security clearance because of his financial links, Reuters reported.
This means advisers who previously had access to “top secret/sensitive compartmented information” had it changed to “secret”, which gives them access to less sensitive material and fewer government secrets.
A spokesperson for Kushner told BBC that there were many people at Kushner’s level whose process of confirmation was delayed.
Kushner, a businessman, was given a broad portfolio at the White House and tasked with leading Trump’s plan to forge a peace deal in West Asia despite the lack of political experience. While Trump, as President, can grant Kushner permanent clearance, he said on Friday he was leaving the decision to his chief of staff. “I will let General Kelly make that decision,” Trump said.
Kushner’s security clearance has been in the spotlight after he failed to disclose dozens of financial holdings and contacts with foreign leaders in his security clearance forms, The Guardian reported.