A US state department interpreter told associates that listening to the conversation between the two world leaders was like “eavesdropping on two friends chatting in a bar”, Politico has quoted a former official as saying. However, it is unclear whether the claims refer to the subject addressed during the conversation or the men’s tone of voice.
There were at least twelve calls from the Kremlin to Washington DC or vice versa during Mr Trump’s term as US President.
New US President Joe Biden will be able to access records of the conversations.
A former White House official from the Trump era told Politico the Biden Administration does not need authorization to access the records.
The source added: “Biden owns all the call materials. There is only one president at a time.”
Another Trump official said the calls between Mr Trump and the Russian President should stay privileged.
They told the news outlet: “There are certain things a president and his immediate staff should be able to hold privileged to do the work of government, without being subject to constant partisan gamesmanship.”
Kel McClanahan, the executive director of the National Security Counselors law firm, said only Mr Biden, as the current President, had the right to decide whether the conversations will be accessed.
He told Politico: “The only person who can claim executive privilege anywhere is the sitting president.