Cliff Owen / AP
Natalie Khawam, accompanied by her attorney Gloria Allred, leaves a news conference in Washington, Nov. 20, 2012.
Attorney Gloria Allred and Natalie Khawam, the twin sister of Jill Kelley, held a press conference Tuesday to “help the public understand” Khawam and "correct misconceptions" regarding her involvement in the scandal that led to the resignation of former CIA Director David Petraeus.
“Everything that is said has an impact on [Khawam’s] life, and she’s worked very, very hard to earn her position as a well-educated attorney, someone who cares about her family, and she values her reputation, and, of course, she’s hurt, as anyone would be hurt when there are mischaracterizations of what she has done, what she has said or what is going on in her life,” Allred said at the press conference in Washington, D.C. “This is, in part, an opportunity to set the record straight.”
A friend of Petraeus, Khawam has so far only bore a tangential relationship to the scandal that forced Petraeus to resign his post about a week and a half ago.
After the FBI began an investigation, Petraeus admitted an extra-marital affair in his resignation letter from the CIA. He is believed to have conducted that affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell.
Khawam is the twin sister of Tampa socialite Jill Kelley, who received “alarming” emails from an anonymous source, according to a spokesperson for Kelley. The FBI investigation into those emails identified Broadwell as the sender, officials said.
“My sister Jill and I aren’t just twins, we’re best friends, literally inseparable,” Khawam said. “During my darkest times, Jill held a light for me. She and my brother-in-law took me in when we needed refuge and protection. Jill is the kindest, most generous person I know.”
Both Petraeus and Gen. John Allen, commander of U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan, intervened in Khawam’s custody battle in September, writing letters in support of her.
At the time, Khawam was seeking to relax a judge’s order restricting her visits with her now 4-year-old son. The judge hearing the case took issue with Khawam’s claims of domestic violence, calling them “patently incredible” and “obviously fabricated,” and she harshly criticized her for a “stunning willingness to say anything, even under oath, to advance her own interests.”
Holly Petraeus previously signed an affidavit also in support of Khawam, according to the lawyer for Grayson Wolfe, Khawam’s ex-husband.
Allred said Khawam's family law attorney has filed an appeal in the custody case and that the briefs in that appeal "articulate why the lower court decision should be reversed" and full child custody granted to Khawam.
“I contacted Gloria Allred in order to assist me and help guide me through what is a very difficult time for me and my family,” Khawam said. “I look forward to the day when I’m able to answer everyone’s question and explain what really happened in this matter.”
More content from NBCNews.com:
- FBI raids Detroit Public Library main offices
- 13-year-old girl fatally shot on Florida school bus
- Beverly Hills attorney accused of squatting in home, trashing it
- Theft of sacred rock drawings stuns California tribe
- Video: Real-life 'sleeping beauty' slept 64 days in a row