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Pentagon considers renting a floor in Trump Tower to store nuclear launch codes

First Lady Melania Trump and their son Barron are still living in Trump Tower, with Trump planning to make regular visits.

Campaign 2016 Trump Jobs Kickback Claims Trump Tower in New York Source: Mark Lennihan/PA Wire

THE PENTAGON WANTS to rent space in Trump Tower in New York for equipment and military personnel accompanying President Donald Trump during his stays there, officials have confirmed.

First Lady Melania Trump and their son Barron are still living in Trump Tower, with Trump planning to make regular visits.

US presidents are accompanied around-the-clock by military personnel, notably those who carry the briefcase containing the nuclear codes that would enable him to launch an attack at a moment’s notice – the so-called ‘nuclear football’.

The Pentagon’s request for a Trump Tower foothold carries potential for embarrassment because it plays into a running debate over potential conflicts involving Trump’s vast real estate interests.

Trump Protests NYC Demonstrators march on 5th Ave towards Trump Tower during a protest last month. Source: Alexander F. Yuan/AP/Press Association Images

Trump has refused to sell off his holdings upon taking office, instead putting them in a trust managed by his two elder sons.

He also rejected putting his assets in a “blind trust” controlled by an independent manager.

“In order to meet official mission requirements, the Department of Defense is working through appropriate channels and in accordance with all applicable legal requirements in order to acquire a limited amount of leased space in Trump Tower,” Lieutenant Colonel James Brindle, a Pentagon spokesman said.

Trump International Security Source: Andrew Harnik/PA Wire

“The space is necessary for the personnel and equipment who will support the POTUS at his residence in the building,” he said.

According to Pentagon officials, the Defense Department has previously rented space near the private residences of previous presidents. But they were unable to provide details.

The New York Times reports that renting a full floor on Trump Tower costs about $1.5 million (€1.41m) a year, according to leasing agents, and that the US government has previously rented space near presidents before, including one near Barack Obama’s Chicago home and a trailer on George W. Bush’s Texas ranch.

© – AFP, 2017

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