WASHINGTON — President Trump was not aware that his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, had worked to further the interests of the government of Turkey before appointing him, the White House said Thursday.

The comments came two days after Flynn and his firm, Flynn Intel Group Inc., filed paperwork with the Justice Department formally identifying him as a foreign agent and acknowledging that his work for a company owned by a Turkish businessman could have aided Turkey’s government. Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday called the action “an affirmation of the president’s decision to ask General Flynn to resign.”

At the White House, asked whether Trump knew about Flynn’s work before he appointed him as national security adviser, press secretary Sean Spicer said, “I don’t believe that that was known.”

Pence said in an interview later with Fox News that he also did not know about Flynn’s paid work.

Flynn and his company filed the registration paperwork describing $530,000 worth of lobbying before Election Day on behalf of Inovo BV, a Dutch-based company owned by Turkish businessman Ekim Alptekin. In an interview with The Associated Press, Alptekin said Flynn did so after pressure from Justice Department officials.

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