Putin dismisses US claims about Trump, Russia and elections

Posted June 06, 2017

Russian President Vladimir Putin strongly denied he had any compromising material about United States President Donald Trump in a televised interview broadcast on Sunday (June 4). To support his assertion, he even mentioned "a theory that Kennedy's assassination was arranged by the United States intelligence services". Putin said he didn't realize that Flynn had been involved with anything having to do with US intelligence until someone told him afterward. "Put your finger anywhere on the map of the world, and everywhere you will hear complaints that American officials are interfering in internal electoral processes". "And I got up and left", Mr Putin said.

Putin said he didn't know anything about Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner attempting to set up a secret communications channel with Russian Federation.

Putin told Kelly that he has "no idea" if Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the USA, met with any members of Trump's team before inauguration.

"They have been misled", Putin told NBC. "We didn't have any relationship at all", he added.

"There was a time when he used to come to Moscow", he said. And afterwards I was told, "You know there was an American gentleman, he was involved in some things".

Putin downplayed Flynn's appearance with him at a December 2015 gala dinner in honour of the Russian television network Russia Today (RT), which U.S. officials consider a state-run propaganda outlet.

"I asked him all about Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law, and what connections they have had and what they have discussed, and I asked him specifically about somebody else very much in the news, and that is President Trump's now fired national security adviser, General Michael Flynn", Kelly said on NBC, previewing her exclusive interview with the Russian president. "This is nonsense. Do you understand what you are asking me or not?"

Interviewer Megyn Kelly pressed Mr Putin on whether he has any dossier or embarrassing dirt on the USA president that could be used to blackmail him. "Your lives must be so boring", if Americans are reduced to making up stories about Russian Federation, he said.

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She was accused of "disrespecting" him by wearing a knee-length dress revealing her lower legs during the audience in Berlin. Another user said: "Taking selfies at the Holocaust memorial was tasteless and frankly very ignorant and stupid!".

"Why do you feel you have the right to ask us these kinds of questions?"

Putin again denied any Russian involvement in the US presidential election and any knowledge of Russian contacts with the Trump campaign.

The Russian leader was quoted as saying by TV Line that he had not seen any proof of his country's interference during the US election and the USA intelligence officials had been misled.

Putin's comments come days before former FBI Director James Comey is due to testify before Congress.

The leader also downplayed any interaction he had with former U.S. National Security Advisor Michael Flynn when asked about an image the pair sitting together at a dinner for a Russian television network in December 2015.

Mr Putin looked and sounded like an increasingly irritated man.

When the Senate intelligence committee in May demanded that Flynn provide a list of any contacts with Russian officials during the presidential campaign and transition, Flynn invoked his constitutional right against self-incrimination and refused.

Kelly also spent time with Putin Thursday evening while they both took part in a state dinner at Konstantin Palace in St. Petersburg, although that footage did not air on Sunday.