Senate hearing to focus on Russian disinformation tactics

Russian President Vladimir Putin foreground and Defense Minister

Russian President Vladimir Putin foreground and Defense Minister

Russian president Vladimir Putin on Thursday quoted the wrong American president in answering a question as to whether Russia interfered in the election. They are preventing the new president from fulfilling his campaign promises on many issues: "health care, other issues, global relations, ties with Russia", Putin said in remarks at a forum in the northern Russian city of Arkhangelsk. Mark Warner said Putin "ordered a deliberate campaign carefully constructed to undermine our election".

Earlier this year, Slovenia offered to host a meeting between Mr Putin and Mr Trump.

Finnish President Sauli Niinisto, whose country is due to take the rotating leadership of the Arctic Council, said he would be honoured to host such a meeting.

The Russian leader stressed that such events should be very well-prepared "by both sides". "If not, I think such a meeting [with the U.S. president] may be held as part of ordinary meetings of this kind at the G20 summit [due in Germany in July]", he said. "If not, then such a meeting could take place within the framework of the usual meetings, at the G20".

A mural on a street in Vilnius, Lithuania, showing Vladmir Putin and Donald Trump in an embrace.

Thousands of people took part in anti-corruption rallies across Russia on Sunday and dozens of them were arrested or fined.The United States and the European Union called on the Russian authorities to free detainees.

"We perceive and treat the United States as a great power, with which we want to establish very good partnership".

'All those things are fictional, illusory and provocations, lies, ' Putin continued.

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"I can see the USA ambassador (to Russia John Tefft) is sitting here. He is communicating with everyone", Putin told the audience at the forum.

Specific dates for a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his USA counterpart Donald Trump have not been discussed yet, Michael Anton, Deputy Assistant to the President for Strategic Communications on the United States National Security told TASS on Thursday.

"What else is he there for?"

USA intelligence has accused Moscow of waging a broad-ranging campaign to help Trump win the election. This has led to investigations in the Senate and House of Representatives as well as an FBI probe into the Trump campaign's ties with Russian Federation.

Trump's son-in-law and top aide Jared Kushner is to face a congressional panel over his contacts with Russian state bank executives a year ago that Moscow has dismissed as "normal business" for the banks. "And we already know right now they're trying to do it with other countries", Ryan said during the interview.

Putin said Russian Federation has many friends in Washington and relations between the two countries would get better at some point.

Ryan continued: 'The world's super power, the American government needs to do everything we possibly cannot only to undercut what they're trying to do but to uncover what they're trying to do and help our allies prevent it from happening'. To completely end all relations?

"They are already nearly at a zero point". [To] break off the diplomatic relationship? "Do we want to bring the situation to what it was during the Cuban Missile Crisis of the 1960s?"

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