President Putin's spokesman tells Fareed Zakaria he is sorry for controversies
Dmitry Peskov says America is humiliating itself by accusing Russia of interfering with the US election
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Sunday that Russia is being demonized, and that it was impossible for his country to have interfered with the 2016 election, despite US claims.
Peskov, who has been a spokesman and top aide to Vladimir Putin for almost two decades, told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria that he was sorry for the many controversies surrounding Russia’s connection to the Trump campaign and its role in effecting the outcome of the US election.
Saying he didn’t know where to begin with all the allegations, Zakaria began by asking Peskov directly if the Russian government had “any collaboration or serious communication back and forth with Donald Trump’s campaign during the election campaign last year.”
“The answer is very simple, no,” Peskov replied.
“The fact that Russia is being demonized in that sense comes very strange to us. And we are really sorry about that,” he added.
What’s more, he said, America was “self-humiliating” by admitting that a foreign country had the power to intervene in its election process.
“America,” Peskov said, is “a huge country, a country number one, the most powerful country in the world, with a very, very stable political tradition and you say that a country can easily intervene and easily influence your electoral process. This is simply impossible.”
Russia’s stance on this is simple, he said.
“We will never let anyone to put his nose in our domestic affairs, but we’re quite reciprocal in that attitude when it comes to other countries.”
Asked by Zakaria what he made of the fact that “all 16 United States intelligence agencies say they have high confidence that Russia tried to alter the outcome of the elections in the United States,” Peskov said he had not seen anything “trustful.”
“We have never seen any evidence,” he said.
“What we have seen in open, a public part of a report by one of the agencies, special agencies, of the United States, and I would humbly say that it’s not a paper of a high quality in terms of being really trustful,” he said, referring to the heavily censored January intelligence report into Russian cyberhacking activities during the 2016 campaign.