Putin Dismisses Russian Election Interference, Calls it "Useless & Harmful Gossip"

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Russian President Vladimir Putin denied Friday that Moscow had colluded with members of Donald Trump's campaign team before the new administration took office, and said that US allegations that Russia tipped the 2016 presidential election on behalf of Trump "reminds me of anti-Semitism and blaming the Jews".

Speaking on a panel at the 2017 St Petersburg International Economic Forum on Friday, the Russian president told NBC News anchor Megyn Kelly that the USA election hack could have been accomplished by anyone-including her daughter. "Don't worry, be happy", Putin quipped in the presence of Prime Minister Modi at the Plenary Session of St. Petersburg International Economic Forum 2017 in Russian Federation.

Asked about the "fingerprints", IP addresses allegedly belonging to Russian hackers, he said those could have been easily rigged and couldn't stand as credible evidence. It's like anti-Semitism. 'The Jews are to blame. Economic relations are expanding, the Prime Minister said. Foreign executives typically use their presence to signal to the Kremlin their enthusiasm for investing in Russian Federation. It's not much of a surprise that they continue to do so, as the United States is the nation best positioned to thwart Russian ambitions of empire.

"It undermines trust, and in the end damages your own national security", Mr. Putin said.

Mr. Snowden, 33, was given asylum in Russian Federation in 2013 after leaking classified information about USA spy operations.

Putin attributed the accusations of Russian interference to the Democrats' anger over losing the vote, adding that Trump won because he has been more successful in his campaign.

The Russian government has denied US intelligence agencies' conclusion that it sought to influence the election in Trump's favor, but Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that some Russian individuals may have acted on their own. "They came to the polls and voted for him, and the other team miscalculated".

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Julia Ioffe of The Atlantic is essential reading on all things Putin and Russian Federation, not least because she was born there and still speaks the language.

He added: "The U.S. demands from their allies to raise their spending and simultaneously says that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is not going to attack anybody".

"If such a major emitter as the United States is not going to cooperate entirely then it won't be possible to agree on any deal in this area", Putin said.

"What else is the ambassador supposed to do?" Putin said. "He's paid for holding meetings, discussing current affairs. We didn't even start negotiations".

Russian Federation is also involved in the development of the Arctic, in supporting the work of the World Health Organization and enhances the potential of fundamental sciences such as physics or mathematics, he said. "It will if it leads to NATO's breakup, but we aren't seeing any such breakup yet".

In a wide-ranging question-and-answer session, Putin also questioned Trump's call for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies to increase their military spending.

Vladimir Isachenkov reported from Moscow.

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