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Democratic Lawmakers Press Flynn on Middle East Trips

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Democratic lawmakers investigating fired national security adviser Michael Flynn's security clearance said Monday they could not find the hotel Flynn said he stayed at during a 2015 trip to Saudi Arabia or any record of a conference he reported attending.

In a letter to companies for which Flynn worked, U.S. Representatives Elijah Cummings and Eliot Engel requested documents related to Flynn's work in Saudi Arabia, Russia and other countries. They said Flynn had not accurately reported his foreign travels and contacts in a 2016 application to renew his security clearance.

Cummings is the ranking Democrat on the House of Representatives' Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Engel is the ranking Democrat on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

Flynn's work for foreign interests has taken center stage in a broad federal investigation into the ties between President Donald Trump's associates and Russia and other countries during and after the 2016 election.

While Flynn disclosed an October 2015 trip to Saudi Arabia, Cummings and Engel said Flynn omitted key details and said they could not identify any conference he may have attended or find the hotel he reported staying at during the trip.

The two lawmakers said they were most troubled by the lack of any Flynn record identifying "even a single foreign government official he had contact with in the seven years prior to submitting his security clearance application."

Cummings and Engel also cited a recent Newsweek report which said Flynn took a trip to the Middle East in the summer of 2015 in pursuit of a joint U.S.-Russian venture to develop nuclear facilities, in a deal to be financed by Saudi Arabia.

"If this press report is accurate, General Flynn's failure to report this trip and any contacts with foreign government officials about this Saudi-Russian nuclear proposal appears to be a potential violation" of a law against making false statements to federal officials, the letter said.