1146 GMT September 22, 2019
Shortly after Trump's remarks on Twitter, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly made the rounds of Sunday television news shows to praise any so-called back channel communications, especially with Russia, as "a good thing," Reuters reported.
The Republican president returned to the White House after a nine-day trip to the Middle East and Europe that ended on Saturday to face more questions about alleged communications between Jared Kushner and Russia's ambassador to Washington.
"It is my opinion that many of the leaks coming out of the White House are fabricated lies made up by the #FakeNews media," Trump wrote in a series of Twitter posts on Sunday.
In a statement later on Sunday night, carried by the New York Times, Trump praised Kushner and the work he has done in the White House.
The White House faces mounting questions about potential ties between Russia and Trump's presidential campaign, which are also the subject of criminal and congressional investigations.
Trump officials were preparing to establish a "war room" to address an issue that has begun to dominate his young presidency.