Home World Europe News Trump-Putin Summit: Donald Trump Defends Russia over Claims of Election Interference

Trump-Putin Summit: Donald Trump Defends Russia over Claims of Election Interference

After face-to-face talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, President Donald Trump has defended Russia over claims of interference in the 2016 presidential election.

President Trump contradicted US intelligence agencies and said there had been no reason for Russia to meddle in the vote.

President Putin reiterated that Russia had never interfered in US affairs.

The two leaders held nearly two hours of closed-door talks in the Finnish capital on July 16.

At a news conference after the summit, Donald Trump was asked if he believed his own intelligence agencies or the Russian president when it came to the allegations of meddling in the elections.

He replied: “President Putin says it’s not Russia. I don’t see any reason why it would be.”

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US intelligence agencies concluded in 2016 that Russia was behind an effort to tip the scale of the election against Hillary Clinton, with a state-authorized campaign of cyber attacks and fake news stories planted on social media.

Some US politicians had called for the Trump-Putin summit to be canceled after 12 Russian intelligence officers were indicted last week, accused of hacking the presidential campaign of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

Speaking at the press conference in Helsinki, President Putin offered to allow US investigators to visit Russia to question the officers.

Vladimir Putin made it clear that, in return, Russia would want similar access to people in the US it suspects of criminal activity.

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