Russian President Vladimir Putin, presidential candidate, at a campaign rally on March 3, 2018 in Moscow
President Vladimir Putin confessed to „mocking madly“ whether Russian nationals interfered in the 2016 US presidential election, insisting that there was no connection with the Kremlin, in an interview published on Friday. .
„Why did you decide that the Russian authorities, including myself, gave permission to do that?“ Asked Putin in an interview with NBC television, during which he adopted combative.
„Maybe they are not even Russian but Ukrainian, Tatar or Jewish with Russian nationality, which should also be checked,“ said the Russian president. He was referring to the Russians accused of carrying out actions against Hillary Clinton and influencing the outcome of the presidential election.
„Maybe they have dual citizenship or a green card, maybe they have been funded by the US How would you know that I do not know,“ Putin said.
US Special Attorney Robert Mueller is conducting an extensive investigation to determine whether there is a possible agreement between the Russians and Donald Trump’s campaign team.
Last month Mueller indicted 13 Russian nationals, including one close to Putin, and three Russian companies for supporting Trump’s campaign, slandering his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton and interfering in the electoral process.
„If they are Russian, so what?“ Putin said. „There are 146 million Russians, and so … (…) I do not care, I do not care about it (…) They do not represent the interests of the Russian state“.
The Russian destabilization campaign, financed by millions of dollars, would have started in 2014, according to the indictment.
This document by prosecutor Mueller has 37 pages, but Vladimir Putin said he had not seen evidence for the time being that the interference violated US law.
„Did we impose sanctions against the United States? The United States imposed sanctions on us,“ he said.
„We in Russia can not judge anyone until they have violated Russian law (…) At least send us a piece of paper (…) Give us a document. we will make an official request and we will take a look at it. “
The main US intelligence agencies had already denounced Russian interference in the election campaign, but Donald Trump has consistently rejected any collusion between his aides and Moscow.
„Can anyone believe that Russia, thousands of miles away, has influenced the outcome of the election, and that does not seem ridiculous to you?“ the Russian state.
„It’s not our goal to interfere, we do not see what goal we could have achieved by interfering,“ he said.
US intelligence chiefs said last month that Russian attempts to interfere in US politics continued and said they posed a threat to the crucial parliamentary elections in November.