Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov complained Tuesday that his nation has been accused of interfering in elections around the globe “without a single piece of proof.” The U.S. intelligence community has laid blame for a campaign of cyberattacks ...
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Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov complained Tuesday that his nation has been accused of interfering in elections around the globe “without a single piece of proof.”
The U.S. intelligence community has laid blame for a campaign of cyberattacks during last year’s presidential election on the Russian government, accusing it of working to hinder the campaign of Democrat Hillary Clinton and aid the candidacy of President Donald Trump. The election interference in the U.S. replicated previous Russian efforts around the globe, although the Kremlin has denied it engaged in any such activities.
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The issue also came to the forefront on Monday after it was revealed that a former adviser to President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia.
“Without a single piece of proof, we are as you know being accused of meddling not only in the U.S. election, but also in those in European states,” Lavrov said in remarks captured by the Interfax news agency and reported by Reuters. The Russian foreign minister noted that his nation had been recently accused of involving itself in the political process in South Africa and added that “in general, there is no limit to fantasy.”
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While Trump has begrudgingly said that Russia was to blame for last year’s campaign of election interference, he has also suggested that other nations could have been to blame. The president has been steadfast in his insistence that there was no coordination between his campaign and the Kremlin, even as special prosecutor Robert Mueller continues to investigate the subject.
The first indictments from Mueller’s team became public on Monday when former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his associate, Rick Gates, were charged with money laundering and other crimes related to their ties to pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine. A guilty plea entered earlier this month from former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos was also unsealed, including court documents in which Papadopoulos says he sought “dirt” on Clinton from Russia.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Tuesday that "so far Russia doesn't figure in any way in these charges which have been made," according to an Associated Press report. He called accusations that Russia meddled in the U.S. election “unfounded.”
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