World

Nobody really knows about Russian hacking: Trump

WARSAW:  US President Donald Trump (right) conceded yesterday that Russia may have interfered in the 2016 election that brought him to power, but said other countries may also have been involved.

"I've said it very simply. I think it could very well have been Russia. I think it could well have been other countries. I won't be specific. But I think a lot of people interfere," Mr Trump said during a visit to Warsaw.

"Nobody really knows. Nobody really knows for sure," he said, challenging US intelligence agencies which have claimed Russian President Vladimir Putin orchestrated a sweeping campaign to tilt the November vote in Mr Trump's favour.

"I remember when I was sitting back listening about Iraq. Weapons of mass destruction.

"How everybody was 100 per cent sure that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.

"Guess what - that led to one big mess," Mr Trump said of intelligence claims that prompted the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq.

He also lashed out at his predecessor Barack Obama over the vote meddling allegations, saying: "My big question is why did Obama do nothing about it from August until November? It wasn't because he choked."

Mr Trump's comments came on the eve of a G20 summit in Germany, where he is due to meet Mr Putin.

He also offered rare criticism of Russia's behaviour, describing Moscow's actions as "destabilising".

Speaking just a day before he meets Mr Putin at a G-20 summit, Mr Trump said the US was working with its allies to counter "Russia's actions and destabilising behaviour".

But the Kremlin said it disagreed with Mr Trump's assessment of Russia's behaviour.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a conference call with reporters that the Kremlin also regretted a lack of understanding between Russia and the US about expectations for their future relations. 
- AFP, REUTERS

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