Trump on Thursday abruptly canceled his meeting with Putin, blaming Russia's refusal to release Ukrainian navy ships and sailors seized during a maritime clash on Sunday.
But on Friday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova suggested the “US domestic political situation” was the real reason the meeting was spiked, Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reported.
“Was the provocation organized by Kiev in this region the real reason for cancellation?” Zakharova said in a press conference. “Publicly, we heard just such an explanation, we took note of it. Is this a reality?
I think that you still need to look for answers in the US domestic political situation."
Trump canceled the meeting as his former attorney Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress over a proposed Trump Tower project in Moscow. Cohen said Thursday that the US President had spoken more extensively during the election with him about the project than he had initially admitted in Congress.
The charge against Cohen was brought by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is probing links between Russia and Trump's campaign team.